The central bank of South Africa has revealed the accomplishment of Project Khokha’s preliminary procedure, which was intended to assemble proof of idea commercial payment system for interbank settlement utilizing a tokenised South African Rand on Ethereum-based blockchain Quorum. The central bank earlier announced project Khokha in February in collaboration with Ethereum Coder collective, CosenSys deploying the use of Quorum, an enterprise blockchain that was designed by JP Morgan and EthLab, a start-up by Ethereum via a network of geographically distributed nodes that collectively reached distributed consensus amid the project trial. Khokha means ‘pay’ in South African native language Zulu. The report on this trial was titled ‘Exploring the Use of Distributed Ledger Technology for Interbank Payments Settlement in South Africa.’
In order to deliver a combination of resilience, confidentially, scalability and finality, the project made use of Istanbul Byzantine Fault Tolerance (IBFT), a security protocol encouraged by an MIT paper, together with Pedersen commitments and range proofs. The 14 weeks program which started in January 2018 was a collective procedure that included a consortium of banks like Absa, Capitec, Discovery Bank, FirstRand, Investec, Ned bank, and Standard Bank. Ethereum-based blockchain Innovation Company ConsenSys and PricewaterhouseCoopers were also involved as partners. SARB had a regulatory oversight and was able to access and view details of all transactions during the trial. The deputy governor of South African reserve bank, Francois Groepe explained that:
“Our goal with project Khokha is to contribute to the global initiatives which assess the application and use cases of distributed ledger technology (DLT) through this collaborative effort piloted by the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) together with the national banking community.”
The outcome of this trial demonstrate that the Quorum blockchain can process the typical day to day volume which is taken care of by South Africa’s Real-Time Gross Settlement System (SAMOS), SAMOS does this in a rate of about 70,000 exchanges in 75 minutes. Exchanges were taken care of in an average of two seconds and at a 100 percent settlement rate. SAMOS is an interbank settlement system set up and managed by the South African Reserve Bank.
The central bank further noted that the replacement of SAMOS is not the intention of the objective of the blockchain settlement system at this point. Instead, it aims to provide a better understanding of how the Quorum blockchain platform would integrate with the existing interbank settlement system. ConsenSys had previously been used in Singapore for a similar project called “Project Ubin,” and it was an effort to digitize Singapore’s currency on the blockchain platform.