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Briefing note on Blockchain for SDG

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The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030), with its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) was adopted by world leaders in September 2015, and came officially into force on 1 January 2016. Over the coming years, based upon these new universal Goals, countries will mobilize efforts to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind (A/RES/70/1).

Agenda 2030 puts great emphasis on the role that trade and innovation can play in support of sustainable development. An important emerging innovation that has been in the news often during the last two years is blockchain technology. This briefing note examines the possible contributions that blockchain could make to the achievement of the SDGs. In particular, it explores the possible implications for the facilitation of trade transactions and access to global value chains, especially for small businesses in developing and transition economies, as well as for the provision of effective government services that support more inclusive economic and social progress.