Announcing the Blockchain Malta Association to Create the Blockchain Island

December 28th 2017 - Steve Tendon

On November 7, 2017, during the "MyBlockchain - Episode #2: It is Everywhere!" educational clinic organized by Finance Malta, Steve Tendon announced the constitution of the Blockchain Malta Association with the following inauguration speech entitled "Announcing the Blockchain Malta Association to Create the Blockchain Island".

I am here to announce the foundation of the Blockchain Malta Association to create the Blockchain Island.

There is a tremendous responsibility for all of us today. This is not about an ordinary association we are about to form. This is about the very future of this country! Others, out there, will eventually try the same path. It will be a gold-rush — or even an arms race. There will be throat-cutting competition, because in this space of crypto-economics, the winner will take it all more than ever.

Today we are not talking about trying to understand semi-legal activities of some hackers playing around with crypto-currencies. Today we are setting the foundation of this country's future economic power and prosperity. This is about the well-being of this nation for decades to come. This has to be done right!

There are social, economic and technological forces that conjure and give us a unique window of opportunity. It is important to time it right. The window is moving fast. It will not stay open for long — and others will see it too, and jump through it. We have to move now, before it is too late. We can no longer be the first ones, but we can still be the fastest ones to claim a leading role in the crypto-sphere. By acting with decisiveness and speed, we can leapfrog other countries.

This is not about adopting yet another, new "disruptive innovation." This is about creating a legacy that we will leave behind for future generations. Those who will contribute to this incredible transformation, will have their names written in history. They will be judged by generations to come, by what they decide and build here and now.

As members of this society, we all bear a lot of responsibilities. I appreciate how questioning conventional wisdom is hard to do, especially when the stakes are so high. Yet, today I am going to ask you to question how things have always been decided and done in the recent history of this country, because now thinking about doing "business as usual" would be both wrong as well as wasteful. We have to have the guts to aim for the crypto space, as the Soviet Union launched the Sputnik 60 years ago to conquer space.

There will be many similar — "Wanna Be-s" — initiatives taken by other countries. Unless we are different in our approaches and resolution, we will be wasting time and effort. That is why we need a BIG IDEA which can set us apart from other competing jurisdictions. We need an idea that will not only create wealth for all citizens of this country, but also give us all the opportunity to be part of an amazing story; actually to be part of the making of history.

Unlike other countries who today are ahead of Malta simply by timidly and shortsightedly "regulating the Fintech space," we want to recast the very foundation of the country's whole economy, and life through the narrative that will bring it an unprecedented prosperous and rich future.

Our BIG IDEA will delivery more benefits to the country than anything that has ever been attempted before. We are going to set our sights highs, to become almost heroes by bringing unprecedented wealth to this country. We want to transform Malta into the "Google" or the "Apple" of the Internet of Value — and in doing so we might even be able to set the foundations for Utopian visions, like guaranteeing basic income to all citizens of the island.

Is this plan bold? We will certainly debate the finer details of how the technology works; or its subtle legal implications; or the social impact of smart contracts; and so on. But there is no doubt that the BIG IDEA is bold.

If you don't like bold plans, then there's a real possibility that this association is not for you. We would always be working quickly, with an entrepreneurial spirit, to cover lots of ground in a short time; while you would probably be accustomed to being slow, and doubtful, and held back by caution.

I am OK with the notion that my BIG IDEA could be too bold, and it might not be right for you.

But then — again — if the BIG IDEA did work out, then our forces could combine to create something extraordinary. Imagine all the people in this room, putting together their thinking heads, energies and aspirations. Almost like some resulting super-power, I strongly believe we can make such a bold plan happen.

I personally believe in this project, and I have personal reasons to pursue it!

I have been living here, in Malta, for almost 12 years now. I've lived in St. Julians, Xewkia on Gozo, Xemxia in St. Pauls Bays, in Balzan, and now in Xghajra. It has really become my second home. I've met lots of amazing people, and built deep friendships. This country has given me so much, I feel it is time to give something back, somehow.

I realize that this plan would allow me to do that. That's why I don't talk about abstract technologies, but about the opportunity to create prosperity for the entire nation. It is not only about the economy, but also about the social responsibility and change to the very fabric of society.

In the bigger scheme of things, we know Malta has no natural resources — and this plan is almost like creating wealth out of thin air. So, if we are able to conceive of such a bold plan, we really owe it to the future generations to make it happen. That way we can be proud of being part of this society, and of this community

If you are not attracted by this BIG IDEA, then I can leave this room here and now. That would be OK with me, because it would be the right thing to do. By the same token, if you only "like" this idea, I will also leave this room here and now. I am totally OK with that too.

Because you cannot possibly want to join this association, unless you love this BIG and BOLD IDEA. I believe in this so strongly. Anything less than uttermost and complete enthusiasm will not work.

If you love this BIG IDEA, and want to build this country's future prosperity, and want to be remembered as one of those who were there, who had the foresight and who built the legacy for the future generations, then this is the BIG IDEA you should push for, with all your forces. And you know that the people on this association are the best companions to make it happen, because together they will figure out how to do this better than anyone else.

No, I am not going to do this for you, alone. We will all do it together.

If you feel this is the right thing to do, sign up with the association immediately — and we will see to make it all happen. Together.

Thank you!

Steve Tendon