ASX may postpone blockchain clearing and settlement system launch

ASX-buildingMarket participants demand that the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) postpone the launch of the clearing and settlement system on the blockchain for two years, as the new project “lacks clarity”.

Computershare, a stock registration company, told the Financial Times that it advocates delaying the introduction of a new clearing and settlement system on the blockchain developed by ASX. 
Computershare emphasized the lack of clear information about the technical and operational aspects of the new system, the structure of fees for new services, and how the new system will be regulated.
Several ASX customers have also expressed concern about the ability of the exchange to spread its dominant market position for clearing and settlement in other markets, including stock registration services.

“This new platform is owned by ASX. ASX is a monopolist and it is not perfect. I believe that it should not deploy such a system, ”said Tony Cunningham, founder of CPS Capital, an exchange broker.

Apparently, ASX decided to listen to the opinions of market participants and agreed to a “slight delay” in the launch of the platform. The exchange said:

“We know that there are interested parties who want to make small changes to the start date, as well as those who want to postpone the launch for a long time. We will carefully study the feedback from consultants before making a final decision on the launch date of the system. ”

Back in late 2017, ASX announced that the blockchain would replace its current Clearing House Electronic Subregister System (CHESS) clearing and settlement system. In August last year, the exchange confirmed the active development of a clearing and settlement system on the blockchain.

Also last year it became known that the development of the system is carried out jointly with VMware. Moreover, this is not the first time the initiative raises questions from market participants. Last fall, ASX competitor demanded that the regulator investigate the legitimacy of introducing the trading system on the blockchain.

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