Ripple’s XRP surges to an all-time high as Japanese and South Korean Banks begin testing blockchain-based virtual fund transfers on Friday. Last week, XRP remained stable against the dollar. As of press time, the currency is at an all-time high of $0.51 — up by 90%. Driving the surge may be rising demand for cross-border transactions in Asia. Japanese and Korean banks want to be at the forefront. Asian banking giants have partnered with Ripple to facilitate international funds transfers while also cutting costs by up to 30%.

Frictionless Ripple Payments

SBI Ripple Asia, a joint-venture company established by Japanese financial giant SBI Holdings and San Francisco FinTech startup Ripple will test Ripple’s enterprise blockchain solutions for cross-border payments. Seoul-based blockchain solutions provider DAYLI Intelligence, leads the South Korean team.

Their primary focus is in streamlining transactions between Japan and Korea, but also to the wider region. The tests will involve many of Japan’s largest financial institutions including Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. and Resona Bank as well as two major South Korean banks.

SBI Ripple Asia was established to meet the rising demand for cross-border payments in Asia. ASEAN nations including Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and China are their target markets.

Takashi Okita, SBI Ripple Asia chief executive commented:

South Korea is one of the most active markets worldwide when it comes to blockchain innovation and trading of digital assets. With trade flows into and out of the country totaling $960 billion every year, we also see a high end growing demand for Ripple’s frictionless payments solution in the country.

Blockchain Banking

Blockchain technology eliminates the need for centralized clearing operations. Instead, they rely on all members of a network to confirm transactions based on their own decentralized network’s transaction history.

Ripple’s blockchain fund transfer system may send its first fiat funds between Japan and South Korea by early next year. Eventually, the banks’ goal is to cut costs by an estimated 60% by using Ripple’s  XRP.

Japanese banks are already at the cutting edge when it comes to blockchain-based trnasfers. The cross-border trials will finish on January 31st.