Citi’s Treasury and Trade Solutions (TTS) has announced the launch of Citi Token Services, enabling the transformation of deposits into digital tokens that can be sent instantly anywhere in the world. Based on blockchain and smart contract technologies, the solution is a part of the bank’s broader push to expand its digital asset capabilities for institutional clients.

In a press release, Shahmir Khaliq, global head of services at Citi, says that “digital asset technologies have the potential to upgrade the regulated financial system by applying new technologies to existing legal instruments and well-established regulatory frameworks”.

The solution is expected to create new efficiencies. In a statement to CNBC, Ryan Rugg, global head of digital assets for TTS explains that it will negate the need for large multinational clients with multiple cross-border bank accounts to keep buffers of cash in every account.

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The functionality of Citi Token Services was tested prior to launch In a pilot with Maersk. Citi claims that it “demonstrated programmable transfer of tokenised deposits that provided instant payments to service providers via smart contracts” and that transaction processing times are expected to be reduced from days to minutes.