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ASX delays blockchain transition until 2023

FILE PHOTO: A board displaying stock prices is seen at the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) in Sydney, Australia, Feb. 9, 2018. REUTERS/David Gray/File Photo

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Australia's bourse operator, ASX Ltd ASX.AX, has pushed back the launch date of its pioneering blockchain-based clearing system until April 2023, the company said on Wednesday.

ASX had flagged a delay to the project, which was scheduled for 2021, amid market turmoil in March. A proposed target of April 2022 has now been moved to 2023 after consulting market participants, ASX said in a statement.

“The industry ... requested substantially more post-trade processing capacity than what had been contemplated pre-COVID-19,” the company said.

“This is in response to the extreme increases in trading volumes on the ASX platform during the most volatile period of the pandemic in March.”

The new system will replace the Clearing House Electronic Subregister System (CHESS) on Australia’s main bourse and provide the option of accessing distributed ledger technology, one example of which is commonly known as blockchain.

Reporting by Tom Westbrook; Editing by Christopher Cushing

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