A New Blockchain-Based Property Registry For Japan
A recent article on bitcoinist.com has reported that “Japanese authorities are looking into trialing Bitcoin's blockchain technology to better manage their property and real estate records” In a country with rather strict regulatory policies related to cryptocurrencies the will to launch a trial version of a blockchain based registry system in the summer of 2018 is quite a big step and a clear sign of growing governmental adoption in the technology.
Now, the concept of a blockchain based property registry is not a new one, with Sweden running a similar trial in june 2016 and an MIT paper by Avi Spielman released the same year highlighting blockchain as the future for title record keeping. But, with trial and adoption, comes massive opportunity and welcomed reform to a world where keeping track of who owns what pieces of land is still a low-tech affair, involving mountains of hand-signed documents, envelopes, and couriers.
How it works:
According to the following deloitte article:
In a concept known as “coloured coins” because the coins are coloured to represent a specific asset, such as a house. Property transactions could be handled on a blockchain in a similar way to how payments between parties are handled using digital currencies. However, instead of assuming that each coin is the same, it would be possible to associate a unique house or piece of land to a particular coin, or fraction of a coin, and exchange it just like in any other transaction using digital currency. The entire transaction history of the property could then be followed through the blockchain.
This concept doesn’t just stop with real esate though, and can theoretically be applied to almost all high value items with specific ownership rights such as vehicles, art and potentially even family estates and wills.
And, apart from the improved efficiencies of transaction processing which would hopefully result in reduced costs of sale, this would also help protect owners rights in case of theft and resolve ownership disputes, ensure ownership is correctly transferred after the sales process and help to prevent sales fraud.
So, here is hoping for a successful trial for Japan