The deployment of blockchain technology can save the United Arab Emirates (UAE) more than $3 billion, according to new findings.

The findings were revealed in a white paper entitled “Inclusive Deployment of Blockchain: Case Studies and Learning from the United Arab Emirates,” Emirates News Agency reported on Jan. 15.

The paper was prepared by the Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution UAE — a multi-stakeholder operation focused on science and technology — the Dubai Future Foundation and the World Economic Forum.

Sectors identify priorities for deploying blockchain

The white paper aimed to understand the current level of blockchain application, key challenges and success factors associated with the technology. More than 100 organizations from over 60 governmental and non-governmental entities that already use blockchain participated in the study.

The vast majority — 80% — of the surveyed government entities named early-stage identification of applicable blockchain solutions as the most important factor in deploying the technology.

For large organizations, the success of blockchain deployment relied on a clearly defined scope, roles and responsibilities within projects.

As for the public sector, education and alignment with stakeholders appeared to be the most critical challenge when it comes to blockchain implementation, with the private sector noting regulatory uncertainty as a key concern.

By integrating blockchain into their operations, the UAE government can also drastically reduce paperwork, eliminating 398 million printed documents and 77 million work hours per year, the analysis stated.

The UAE’s focus on blockchain

With reported 80% of public and private sector entities already using blockchain, the UAE has apparently dove headlong into the sector. The UAE, along with both Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, is leading the charge when it comes to positive crypto and blockchain legislation. As blockchain author Sukhi Jutla previously told Cointelegraph:

“The UAE has been smart enough to understand that this innovation will grow in years to come and they don’t want to miss it. I wouldn’t be surprised if the UAE becomes the leading nation in this space just as they did with the oil and property space."

Over the past several months, the UAE has launched a number of blockchain-related initiatives, including the Digital Silk Road which aims to digitize the trade process, the development of the country's first financial document exchange platform based on the tech, and the Silsal blockchain project with the objective to provide greater security, transparency and efficiency in shipping and logistics.