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  • noahchonlee

How to Create a Tokenized Asset Registry In a Special Economic Zone

Updated: Apr 13

In El Salvador, I just tried to buy a motorcycle and found out I needed to receive a local ID number by visiting an office and showing my passport. Then I would need a lawyer to notarize our agreement and then wait several days for the ownership to be transferred and a few weeks before the vehicle registration was renewed. In neighboring countries, these waits are more like a month and maybe more. Even if I were to buy the vehicle with full permission of the other party, if I tried to drive it across Central America without waiting for this slow bureaucratic process then I might be arrested for supposedly stealing it.

Meanwhile, if we had a tokenized asset registry we could have a transaction where someone simply uses their wallet to sign a transaction which transfers an NFT as a digital representation of ownership. Instead of needing a lawyer to send a document to a government agency and then have the various agencies various databases try to reconcile with one another, we would simply have one online leger where you can see which wallets own what and the necessary government agencies know who the owners of the wallets are.

Imagine if you could have an official ID in a jurisdiction simply by uploading a picture of your existing government ID, a selfie liveness check, email verification, then setting up a login option on your phone and some security questions. You could have set up your official ID within a few minutes right from your phone. Then to log in, you could use your fingerprint or password/PIN/pattern or email/phone OTP. You sign transactions by using one or more of those same options as logging in. For larger transactions and for transferring NFTs that represent valuable assets, you also answer security questions.

This would have a recovery option where you repeat the set up process with the same government ID to have the wallet on a new device. In the worst case scenario, you might also contact/visit a government office to let them know you want to switch wallets and then the government asset registrar invalidates the ownership NFTs on your old wallet and re-issues to your own wallet. The government asset registry generally reconciles according to the on-chain records but it still can adjust as needed in this way.

This would mean a world where you could buy even houses within minutes without paying lawyers such a huge cut.

While only certain government agencies would have access to the list of which individuals and legal entities own which wallets, any individual could prove to another individual (or police officer) which wallet they own through a digital handshake which basically means one individual sends a hello to another wallet. The owner of that wallet can respond to the hello and thereby prove they own that wallet. This means you can prove to anyone in an instant which things you own while still having privacy from everyone except certain government agencies about everything that you own. Someone could also split up their assets across multiple wallets which the asset registrar tracks as belonging to you if you want to reveal only some of your assets.

This is just one of many ideas worth billions that become possible through special economic zones and charter cities. In those areas, we have the opportunity to adapt laws and find something better.



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