The autonomous community of Catalonia in Spain has announced its intention to become a pioneer of blockchain by implementing it in its public administration and promoting it to its citizens and companies.

Catalonia’s Department of Digital Policies is tasked with developing an implementation plan by December 31 to be acted on in 2019.

The aim of their implementation plan is to improve the level of digital services the government is offering the public by using blockchain technology, known for its enhanced transparency and ease of facilitating arrangements through smart contracts.

The plan is also focused on promoting the use of blockchain by educating the public and building up its base of blockchain skilled workers, as well as promoting research and innovation. The Catalan government will be seeking multiple ways to help this young industry develop and will help facilitate the adoption rate of blockchain technology among its citizens.

By seeking to implement blockchain nationwide and throughout its whole citizenry, Catalonia is trying to be a pioneer in blockchain.

Barcelona ranks fourth in Europe in terms of amount invested in the country by startups.

Seeing what Malta is doing to project its image as blockchain island and the resultant influx of investment from blockchain companies and cryptocurrency exchanges entering its country, the opportunities that could come from being a leading jurisdiction in this space are clear.

However, unlike Malta, Catalonia isn’t technically it’s own country but rather an autonomous community within Spain. Spain is considered a relatively decentralized country, having devolved power to various communities such as Catalonia, but there’s still a limit to Catalonia’s powers so long as they remain tied to Spain.

Catalonia is home to Barcelona, considered one of the leading tech startup and innovation hubs in Europe. According to the investment fund Atomico, the city ranks fourth in Europe in terms of amount invested in the country by startups ($722 million).

The city is bolstering its image as a tech hub through its Barcelona Tech City initiative, a project that brings together more than 700 tech businesses, and has recently announced a second initiative to expand from its main building to a second building that will house blockchain businesses, ultimately creating a tech city campus with multiple buildings.