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Puerto Rico plans to combat corruption with blockchain

The Puerto Rico government recently showed interest in using blockchain technology to combat corruption. House Speaker Rafael “Tatito” Hernandez confirmed that lawmakers plan to meet with local blockchain experts this month to create smart contracts that aim to bring more transparency and accountability to the sector.

In these meetings, they will discuss how to adopt blockchain technology for anti-corruption purposes. According to Bloomberg, Hernandez spoke about the recent development on anti-corruption at a Blockchain Trade Association Conference.

Hernandez said implementing blockchain and smart contracts could bring more transparency and accountability to the public sector. “We have a real credibility problem,” he explained. “And this might be part of the solution,” he added.

Hernandez also noted that this innovation is a broader effort to make the country a hub for digital assets and blockchain innovations. “Back in the 60s and 70s we had the niche of manufacturing…This is a new niche, a new opportunity to create jobs,” he said.

Puerto Rico has been involved with corruption scandals in recent years. Recently, Cataño Mayor Felix Delgado-Montalvo pleaded guilty to charges of collecting cash bribes of more than $100,000 and luxury watches from companies in exchange for municipal contracts.

Blockchain & anti-corruption efforts in other countries

More countries are combatting anti-corruption with the use of blockchain technology. 

The United Nations drug and crimes agency has advised the Kenyan government to utilize blockchain for anti-corruption purposes. David Robinson, the regional anti-corruption advisor at the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime, said that technologies like blockchain would help Kenya prevent the loss of billions to corrupt practices and crimes in the country.

Also, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Denmark published a report explaining the use of technologies such as blockchain, big data, crowdsourcing, and e-governance to tackle administrative corruption and political corruption. The report stated that blockchain could be used as an anti-corruption tool as it can store records transparently and immutably.

Despite some nations’ efforts to leverage blockchain technology in solving corruption, Russia prohibits government officials from using digital assets due to illegal activities.

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