The project was launched in April 2018 with the creation of the European Blockchain Partnership (EBP), which had as its objective to create the EBSI for the provision of international digital public services with the highest standards of security and privacy.
The EBSI is now ready for launch and will enable the implementation of a wide range of blockchain-based public services.
The project is a joint initiative of the European Commission and EBP itself, and the infrastructure will be made up of a network of nodes distributed throughout Europe, on which an increasing number of applications will be implemented, focusing on specific use cases.
In 2020, EBSI will become a CEF Building Block, providing software and services that can be used free of charge by EU institutions and European public administrations.
A total of €4 million has been invested in the project for 2019-2020, with over 300 contributors and 4 selected use cases. A user group led by an EU Member State has been set up for each use case to provide a prototype application based on the EBSI by early 2020.
The four use cases are notarization, diplomas, international identity and reliable data sharing.
As far as notarization is concerned, the aim is to use blockchain technology to create reliable digital audit paths, automate compliance checks and demonstrate data integrity.
In the case of diplomas, the aim will be to restore citizens’ control over the management of their educational credentials, significantly reduce verification costs and improve confidence in authenticity.
The autonomous sovereign identity, for its part, will be the implementation of the Self-Sovereign Identity, which will allow users to create and control their own identity across borders without having to rely on centralised authorities.
For reliable data sharing, the blockchain will be used to securely share data such as VAT identification codes between customs and tax authorities in the EU.
EU Member States will operate their own national EBSI nodes, which will interact to create a network capable of sharing data. However, the official date of the definitive launch is not yet known.