The largest Russian bank in partnership with the Federal Antimonopoly Service has launched a pilot blockchain project to facilitate the exchange of documents between organisations.

An electronic interaction model allows paperwork to be transferred and stored in an encrypted format and the documents to be signed using electronic signatures. The project involves the country's main airline operator Aeroflot, Russian Coal and ForteInvest.

“Digital Ecosystem is innovative because the document exchange process does not involve communications providers. The convenience of this solution and its cost-optimising effect is achieved by using the networks of its participants,” commented Stepan Kuznetsov, Managing Director of Sberbank’s Shared Services Department.

The head of Sberbank Herman Gref is one of the most prominent supporters of cryptocurrency and the blockchain technology in Russia. Last year, he admitted having bitcoins in his possession. Later, speaking at a meeting with Vladimir Putin, he shared his vision of how blockchain can revolutionise all spheres of social life, from finances to state governance.

In May this year, Gref shared in an interview that Sberbank is planning to launch a new blockchain-based financial IT platform by the end of 2018.