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Seoul Metropolitan Government: Use Public Services and Earn Coins


It is no secret that South Korea is a hotbed cryptocurrency
activity. The support the innovation has received from the private sector has
been top-notch. The nation’s capital, Seoul, has taken this love for crypto a
step further. The city is launching an S-coin based reward system. The point
system will reward the city’s citizens for utilizing public services,
participating in polls and for paying taxes.

The city’s blockchain-based administrative services reward system
is expected to launch in November fully. The launch process has three
significant priorities set. The very first priority is the introduction of the
crypto-based points system.

As per the local news report from Blockinpress,
the reward system will work in conjunction with ZeroPay. ZeroPay is an
innovative government ran QR-code-enabled network. The residents will be in a
position to redeem the points awarded for rewards. They can also utilize the
coins made to purchase goods and services via mobile payments. There are no
merchant charges.

Seoul’s Public Services on Blockchain

Seoul is going to use the blockchain service to solve yet another huddle for its residents. The city is going to use the system to enhance its Seoul Citizen Cards process. The enhanced process will make it much easier for the residents to submit documents. It will eliminate the need for paper document submission through the enabling of digital identity authentication.

Both temporary and part-time worker records of the city are also going on the blockchain system. Their work history, contracts with employers, and recorded time logs will all be accessible from this platform. The November launch will bring about other blockchain-powered projects such as online verification of certifications. Donation management and smart healthcare blockchain ran services will eventually be launched.

The city’s mayor Park Won-soon is pretty blockchain progressive.
In late 2018, he launched a five-year plan that will see $108 million invested in
turning Seoul into a blockchain-powered smart city. The mayor has a Blockchain
Urban Plan in place that covers over 14 public services.

The government-funded budget will drive a large section of the
city’s public services to the blockchain. This includes services such as
vehicle history management, labor welfare, elections voting, donation
management, and certification issuance services.

South Korea’s Blockchain-Friendly Stance

The platform will now act as protection for all part-time workers,
who have had to work without labor contracts. It will assist in ensuring
employment insurance, once the workers register via an app. Once a part-time
employee is logged, the information will be accessed over a distributed network
by insurers and labor welfare organizations.

Park Won-soon’s administration has also put aside $53 million more
to grow the city’s blockchain industry. The funds will build two complexes that
will be home to at least 200 blockchain-based startups. The complexes are
slated for completion by 2021 and will use part of the city’s Mapo Seoul
Startup Hub. Part of the Gaepo Digital Innovation Park will also be utilized.

The city’s blockchain efforts are in line with the country’s blockchain roadmap. The country’s second-most populous city Busan has announced a blockchain “regulation-free” zone. This area, modeled after Switzerland’s Zug, will host public safety, finance, and tourism-related blockchain offerings. Major business entities such as Samsung, Kakao, and Hyundai have also become stakeholders in the crypto industry.

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South Korea's Capital Is Planning to Launch Its Own Cryptocurrency

The South Korean city of Seoul is developing its own cryptocurrency – the “S-Coin” – to be used in city-funded social benefits programs, says its mayor.

Mayor Park Won-soon announced the plan during an interview with CoinDesk Korea last week, where he also revealed that the city will create a fund to support the advancement of blockchain technology and related startups.

“As Seoul is the world’s leading city in the field of information and communications, including the Fourth Industrial Revolution, I think we should study new technologies such as blockchains,” he said.

Like Estonia, which is attempting to apply blockchain technology to all government administrative processes, Park thinks that the “blockchain can be applied to all bureaucratic administrations in Seoul, such as the public transport system system operated by Seoul City and the provision of youth allowance.”

Furthermore, Park indicated that the S-Coin could be used as a payment method for city-funded welfare programs for public employees, young jobseekers and citizens helping the environment by saving electricity, water and gas.

To accomplish this, Park said the laws governing cryptocurrencies would need to be changed, adding that “in order to make an S-Coin, we need to prepare institutional and legal support such as bylaws,” he said. “I will try to change the various laws and regulations of the central government.”

Park also said he hopes to foster a blockchain ecosystem, adding:

“I’ve met blockchain companies, and I think our companies are not seeing the light because of the various regulations. Actually, [the] technology is as advanced as any other country. By creating clusters that will allow blockchain companies to build up, and startups to develop new technologies, we are working to develop and spread blockchain technology around the world.”

Stepping back, this scheme is part of a wider blockchain masterplan for Seoul, which the city expects to complete in April. In November of 2017, the city of Seoul hired Samsung SDS to help it establish an information strategy plan (ISP) for blockchain-based municipal innovation. It is the first city in Korea to create a roadmap for introducing the blockchain.

Regarding the Korean government’s strong regulatory policy on cryptocurrency, Park said, “The last time the Ministry of Justice announced regulatory measures, there was tremendous resistance, and the government seemed to think deeply about it.” He added that it is “the local government’s task to create cases and models.”

If the Seoul government can relax certain regulations, it could become easier to make these models, he suggested.

This article was originally published by CoinDesk Korea and has been translated. 

Seoul on a map image via Shutterstock

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

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Samsung Inks Deal with Seoul Government for Blockchain Platform

Samsung SDS, an IT subsidiary of the South Korean electronics giant, has revealed it is to establish a blockchain-based platform for the public sector.

According to Korea Herald report, Samsung SDS has signed a deal with the Seoul Metropolitan Government to help develop its “information strategy” plan – using blockchain to support administration across welfare, public safety and transportation affairs in the capital by 2022.

Hong Won-pyo, CEO of Samsung SDS said:

“Samsung SDS’ blockchain technology and consulting capabilities will contribute to Seoul’s leap as a top-rate global city.”

The city’s government is seeking to enhance transparency and improve convenience for the public using blockchain technology, the article added.

The announcement follows seven months after Samsung unveiled Nexledger – an enterprise-grade blockchain platform hosted in the cloud – that targeted consortia blockchain efforts.

Samsung image via Shutterstock

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