Business

Dan Taylor

Jamaica Stock Exchange to pilot live digital assets platform

The Jamaica Stock Exchange has announced it is planning a pilot platform for trading cryptocurrencies, amid what has been billed as an ‘historic agreement’ with a Canadian startup.

The stock exchange is partnering up with Blockstation to deliver the platform, in a move the exchange says will make it “one of the first stock exchanges in the world to sign an agreement to enable live trading of digital assets and security tokens in a regulated and secured environment.”

Crypto trading will be conducted through the Blockstation platform, an end-to-end crypto solution for stock exchange operators which plugs in to the broader ecosystem of investors, broker-dealers, regulators and depositories.

The roll out comes after the success of an initial pilot scheme. The stock exchange, notably bullish on digital assets, has said the next phase will see more significant testing in a live trading environment. The second stage of the pilot will involve the trial of Bitcoin Core (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) trading.

Managing director of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, Marlene Street Forrest, said the partnership would help take digital assets into the financial mainstream in Jamaica. She explained, “This is an unprecedented opportunity for the JSE to diversify its product offerings and attract new listings and inbound investments. We welcome retail investors and companies both locally and around the globe to trade digital assets under a safe, efficient and transparent regulatory framework.”

Blockstation co-founder and Chief Enterprise Architect Jai Waterman described digital assets as the “future of capital markets,” noting, “Our turn-key solution paves the way for traditional financial institutions to easily adopt this new, game-changing asset class. We look forward to being part of the evolution of finance going forward.”

The Jamaican Stock Exchange was named the world’s best-performing stock market in 2018, with stocks having soared by some 300% over the last five years.

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