Use of blockchain will help to optimize the operations of the agri-tech sector of Ethiopia simultaneously reducing frauds and improving the accountability.
In addition to revolutionizing and transforming the online digital payments and financial space, one of the most potential applications of the blockchain technology is in the supply chain and the logistics industry. Ethiopia, which is one of the largest coffee producers in Africa, is now exploring the use of blockchain technology in streamlining its supply chain process and establish a real-time tracking of its coffee exports.
The Ethiopian Ministry of Science and Technology has joined hands with Ethereum co-founder and blockchain pioneer Charles Hoskinson for the development of Ethiopian Agritech and further implement it on a public distributed ledger. Cardano, Hoskinson’s smart-contract fueled decentralized startup and the Ethiopian Ministry has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the same purpose.
As per the MoU, Cardano will study and explore several options that will help Ethiopia to transform its agri-tech sector using the blockchain technology. This also involves working on implementing blockchain tech for tracking coffee exports or shipments along its supply chain. Moreover, using the blockchain technology attempts will be made on improving the land registry records thereby minimizing the frauds taking place in the sector.
This change is expected to bring a long-term transformation as it is being backed the powerful blockchain platform. In addition to implementing the blockchain technology, Hoskinson and his team at Cardano will be working on training 100 Ethiopian software developers for using the company’s Haskell programming language.
Hoskinson publicly announced the signing of the MoU with the Ethiopian Ministry on his Twitter account.
Just signed an MOU with the Ethiopian Ministry of Science and Technology to explore training blockchain developers and use Cardano in the Agritech Industry pic.twitter.com/r06W0RSZye
— Charles Hoskinson (@IOHK_Charles) May 3, 2018
Minister Getahun Mekuria Kuma, representing the official partnership from the Ethiopian Mistry of Science and Technology said: “Today is a great day in Ethiopia. In Ethiopia, we have been working on the possibility of adopting blockchain for marketing of agricultural products, especially for coffee.”
Imparting blockchain education to developing countries in Africa will be the key criteria for Cardano and Ethiopia will stand at the center of this educational reform, says John O’Connor, director of African Operations at IOHK (the company behind Cardano blockchain) who joined from the Cardano Foundation.
In one of his recent blog posts, John O’Connor explained how education is paramount criteria of the company’s mission in Africa. He said: “This year we will offer our first course in Africa, probably in Ethiopia, and expect the first cohort of Ethiopian developers to be contributing to Cardano code by the end of the year.”
O’Connor also said that in order to establish a large-scale business or technology in Ethiopia, the government participation is of utmost importance. In a word with Bitcoin Magazine, O’Connor said: “If you don’t have it, it is not really going to happen. The Ministry and Dr. Getahan have been integral in the work we have done so far.”
He also said that implementing blockchain platform will ensure that the Ethiopian farmers are not exploited and get the due payments for their coffee cultivation as they will be able to track every movement of their coffee-produce as well the income followed by it. “Coffee drives the economy here and there is so much potential to improve it; hopefully with blockchain products,” O’Connor said.