Essentia One, a Dutch startup specializing in blockchain technology, is in advanced talks with the Dutch government concerning a border control program. The pilot, which was proposed by Essentia’s co-founders in a meeting with Dutch ministers on February 20th, would use blockchain as a means of storing and accessing data securely. The Amsterdam-based tech startup report that their solution was well-received and have expressed their gratitude to the authorities for being open-minded enough to consider blockchain.
Matteo Gianpietro Zago, Essentia co-founder and Chairman of The Internet of Blockchain Foundation, said: “There are a lot of variables to factor in when approaching a project of this complexity, including multiple data points, the need for oracles, and the approval of multiple agencies and authorities in several jurisdictions. While talks are still at an early stage, our initial meeting went very well, and we were able to present a blockchain-based model that was practical, user-friendly, and capable of alleviating pain points that affect the extant system the Dutch government are using”.
Mateo was joined at the meeting in The Hague by Essentia Head of Business Development Bedros Awanesian and Essentia Advisor Erik van der Staak. The trio discussed a range of topics, and explored the problem they had set out to solve from all angles, before outlining how blockchain could provide a real world use case with the potential to make border control smoother, more efficient, and more transparent. Coupled with the ability to let approved parties inspect passenger data in near-real time, the proposal floated by Essentia contained a number of benefits.
The model currently in use in the Netherlands, for passengers traveling on the Eurostar train between Amsterdam and London, is less than ideal. Passengers are obligated to embark and disembark multiple times over the course of the journey to satisfy the demands of authorities in countries the train passes through. The goal, the Essentia team acknowledged, would be to devise a system that eliminated these efficiencies but still provided the degree of clarity that border control agents required, including a means of vetting and approving passengers before they crossed international borders.
Blockchain’s suitability for maintaining records, which can be entered and permanently stored, made it a strong candidate as a replacement solution that would be immune from loss of data. Essentia proposed a system by which passenger data would be entered end encoded on the blockchain at the start of the journey, and then shared with other authorities on a permissioned basis. This would allow for the necessary oversight required to permit international travel, whilst minimizing disruption.
Essentia are now in talks with other European officials and organizations with a view to launching bespoke blockchain solutions spanning several sectors and use cases. Each of these will combine the characteristics blockchain is prized for, including its security and decentralized nature, coupled with the accessibility and ease of use that’s built into Essentia One’s data management framework.
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