Bursa Malaysia is developing a proof-of-concept (POC) for a blockchain-based bond trading venue.
The exchange has teamed up with blockchain fintech Hashtacs which will develop the technology for 'Project Harbour' which will be based in the offshore island of Labuan and hosted by Labuan Financial Exchange, a subsidiary of Bursa Malaysia.
According to the exchange, Project Harbour is aiming to use distributed ledger technology and the tokenisation of assets to grow its fixed income market. The platform will enable the issuance of digital bonds, while smart contracts will automate the processing of the securities.
Malaysia is following the example of other markets that have sought to develp a blockchain-powered bonds market, including Australia where the first blockchain-based bond was mandated by the World Bank and issued by Commonwealth Bank in 2018.
“The exchange closely follows current trends in innovation and new technologies with a view to remaining relevant in this competitive landscape," said Bursa Malaysia chief executive Muhamad Umar Swift. "One of the ways to achieve this is through collaborations with innovative companies."
"The creation of an industry wide ecosystem will allow for a complete solution in origination, servicing, trading, clearing and settlement, allowing Malaysia to potentially have the first mover advantage in attracting regional and international bond listings,” added Benjamin Soh, managing director or Hashtacs.