Canada Cannabis trade to be tracked by blockchain

With the recent legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada, the tracking of the industry through blockchain technology comes at just the right time.

Toronto-listed DMG Blockchain Solutions announced that it was in the process of creating a supply chain management platform specifically for the trade of cannabis, with deployment to be limited to Canada prior to global expansion.

DMG CEO Dan Reitzik said, “We want to be the first to offer an enterprise grade solution in partnership with leading technology providers and cannabis producers, processors and distributors. The first use of blockchain was Bitcoin, but the perfect use is supply chain management for controlled products such as cannabis.”

He said Canada’s push to be the global supplier of cannabis would be aided with the company’s blockchain platform, “by way of product traceability for rapid recalls, ensuring a legal source of product, enhancing product safety, as well as facilitating and automating legal and taxation compliance.”

Among the components of DMG’s supply chain management are the use of smart contracts, and mechanisms for automatic product recall when needed.

Medicinal cannabis has been available to different degrees among the country’s provinces, since 2001. Recreational use was finally implemented this week.

The legal pot industry shares a similarity with the cryptocurrency industry, in that traditional banks have been reluctant to deal with businesses involved with such products. With the placing of transactions on blockchain, growers, transporters, and dispensaries’ actions are better tracked to ensure legitimacy of the trade. This is in part the idea behind IBM’s “from seed to sale” proposal released last year, in response to British Columbia’s request for input on how to best regulate the industry.

Financial services firm Deloitte said that in Canada alone, the legal trade could make for a $23-billion market, with sales of recreational cannabis alone projected at $4.9 billion-$8.7 billion a year.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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QuadrigaCX sees $28M frozen as Canada’s ‘banking cartel’ steps up crypto attacks

The mainstream financial world has been outwardly hostile towards cryptocurrencies for some time. Banks in Canada have exemplified this attitude in recent months, withdrawing essential banking services from cryptocurrency businesses while continuing to ratchet up their anti-crypto rhetoric.

Some analysts say this is in response to the direct threat posed to banks and traditional fiat banking systems by cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, which offer fast international payments, low transaction fees and absolute security without the need for banks or other centralised institutions.

Now, in the latest example of banks taking exception to promising crypto businesses, press reports have revealed that Vancouver-based QuadrigaCX has been facing a freeze on assets worth as much as $28 million.

According to The Globe and Mail, the firm has been unable to access its account funds since January of this year. With the backing of local courts, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) froze a number of accounts connected to the firm, on allegations that it was unable to determine who legally owned the funds.

Subsequently, the bank has asked to court to rule on whether the bank can seize the funds to determine whether they belong to Quadriga, its affected customers, or the firm’s payment processor.

In response to the attacks on their assets, Quadriga has responded robustly, accusing the bank of an orchestrated attempt to squeeze their business for its affiliations with the cryptocurrency sector.

According to legal representatives for the exchange, the implication that Quadriga was involved in unsavoury businesses practices is untrue and “highly offensive.”

“This court should not succumb to the bank’s unsubstantiated and highly offensive speculation that there must be shady dealings afoot because Quadriga’s business is a trading platform for individuals trading in cryptocurrencies.”

In an email sent to customers impacted by the freeze, Quadriga said a “Canadian banking cartel” was intentionally making life difficult for them, and other crypto businesses, to encourage adoption in Canada.

This incident is but the latest in a series of similar swipes at the cryptocurrency sector from banks, both in Canada and further afield.

However, with Quadriga rival Coinsquare recently establishing a formal banking relationship with one of the country’s biggest banks, there remains some optimism that this attitude might be beginning to change, in favour of supporting the development of the nascent crypto sector there.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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Coinsquare partners with Canadian bank

While most financial institutions shun creating a working relationship with cryptocurrency entities, a few are more open to the idea and realize the role digital currency plays in the evolving financial world. Such is the case with one of Canada’s “Big 5” banks, which recently embraced crypto trading platform Coinsquare. The move is reportedly one of the first examples of a partnership between a bank and a crypto company in Canada.

Coinsquare announced the new partnership in a press release at the end of last week, but didn’t specify which of the five banks was involved. The endeavor will make it easier for Coinsquare’s users to deposit and withdraw funds, as well as serve as a foundation for the company to grow internationally.

Coinsquare CEO Cole Diamond said, “This is a tremendous boost not only for Coinsquare but for the entire Canadian cryptocurrency industry. At Coinsquare, our motto has always been to ‘Do Digital Currency Right’. This announcement is one of many examples of how institutional third party partners put their faith in our approach to the cryptocurrency business. We’re thrilled to start a relationship with a major Canadian bank and we’re excited for what it means for our users.”

One of the actions that helped the exchange secure its financial partnership is its recently completed independent audit. It was the first time since 2014 that the company has been audited by an outside firm and the results were significant in boosting the level of confidence seen by the company. Coinsquare is now one of only a handful of crypto trading platforms in the world to have completed an organization-wide audit by an outside company.

Ken Tsang, Coinsquare’s CFO, added, “Successfully completing an audit and starting a relationship with a top-tier bank helps us push forward on our vision to be the most trusted cryptocurrency platform in the world.”

Coinsquare has continued to grow rapidly this year and has received positive accolades for its platform. In a LinkedIn poll earlier this month, it was recognized as the second most sought after startup, based on data that the site collected from its entire user base. LinkedIn also referred to the company as the fastest growing startup in its ranking.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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