Catalan Government Considers Blockchain for Public E-Voting System

The head of the Catalan government's citizen participation council states that the authority is considering blockchain for the community’s voting system, Spanish daily newspaper La Vanguardia reports Monday, Nov. 19.

Earlier in October, the Generalitat of Catalonia approved a preliminary bill to establish an e-voting system for residents abroad in major elections and other voting processes in the autonomous community.

Recently, Ismael Peña-López, director of Citizen Participation of the Government of Catalonia, revealed that the government hopes to introduce an external e-voting system by the year 2020, as well as to extend electronic voting to all voters.

According to Peña-López, who is a professor of Law and Political Science at the Open University of Catalonia (UOC), the use of blockchain in the state e-voting system is still being considered, although the Generalitat has still not decided on the matter:

"An interesting option is to use blockchain. [...] The Generalitat has not made a clear commitment to the blockchain and is still exploring what options there are before deciding.”

The director noted that, regardless of what technology the government decides to use in the voting system, it must instill trust. La Vanguardia quotes Peña-López, "It's an issue of awareness. The Government is more respectful than a trade. I would like to think that we are able to convince people that [it] is reliable."

Earlier in July, the Government of Catalonia revealed a plan for blockchain tech deployment within its public administration processes in order to improve “digital services to the public.”

The Catalan community has been striving to gain independence from the Spanish government since 1922. On Oct. 27, 2017, the Catalan Parliament declared independence from Spain, following a controversial referendum.

In October 2018, Spanish news agency El Confidencial reported that former Catalan president Carles Puigdemont requested donations in crypto from the public. Puigdemont reportedly requested crypto donations in order to hide financial support to politicians of the Catalan Government.

According to major daily Spanish newspaper El Mundo, the government of Carles Puigdemont used Bitcoin (BTC) in order to fund initiatives promoting independence.