The government of Estonia and Nasdaq have announced that investors in Estonian companies, listed on Nasdaq’s Tallinn Stock Exchange, will be able to vote in shareholder meetings via the distributed ledger.
The stock exchange will use the country’s e-residency platform to provide stockholders with the blockchain-based e-voting system. The pilot of the program is expected to be launched this year.
Established in 2014, Estonia’s e-Residency platform is a digital identity system allowing entrepreneurs in Estonia and abroad to become a resident of the country and use government services. The e-residents can set up and operate their businesses online, sign all agreements remotely, declare taxes and access international payment systems.
Besides, the applicants can receive a digital identity issued by Estonian government. In order to participate in the program, you have to apply for e-Residency, provide your fingerprints and personal data. Following approval, you will get an ID card that enables its users to access services offered by the Estonian state agencies and private sector.
The program, meantime, doesn’t offer tax residency or citizenship. Neither e-residency gives the right to live in Estonia or the European Union.
“I’m delighted Nasdaq will be using the e-Residency platform to offer shareholders a new e-voting system. When we started the e-Residency project a year ago we knew we would change the way people think about nations and citizenship. Now, via our e-voting collaboration with Nasdaq, we will be revolutionizing corporate governance,” said Kaspar Korjus, Program Director of e-Residency.
The blockchain technology will enhance the speed and security of recording votes. By raising the efficiency of the voting process and shareholder meetings, the system will improve corporate governance and encourage stockholder engagement.
“On the heels of the successful execution of a Blockchain transaction in the US private market, we are pleased to further advance this technology in Estonia. Estonia’s robust information society and forward thinking coupled with the agility its size affords, creates a unique opportunity to premiere the e-voting pilot in Estonia,” said Hans-Ole Jochumsen, President of Nasdaq.
“We’re excited to see the development of this project over the coming months, and look forward to working closely with the government of Estonia to set a transformative example of the future of governance,” he added.
The e-voting system is Nasdaq’s second project implying the use of the technology behind bitcoin. The exchange has recently claimed it became the first to issue securities using Nasdaq Linq, a blockchain-powered trading platform.