Nine out of 10 major banks in the US, Canada, and Europe are exploring the use of blockchain technology for payments, according to a new report publihsed by Accenture.

The study revealed that 30% of banks are currently in the advanced stages of adopting blockchain for payments, while 70% of banks are in the early stages of adoption, and 30% are involved in proof-of-concepts with other companies.

However, 27% of banks are still formulating a strategy, while 13% are looking into the technology.

On asked about the most prevalent use cases for blockchain within payments, 44% placed the highest priority on intra-bank cross-border transfers, with a secondary focus on cross-border remittances, corporate payments and inter-bank cross-border transfers.

However, half of the bank executives surveyed said that they recognised the challenges related to blockchain implemention. 63% of respondents cited regulatory concerns regarding blockchain, 56% cited compliance, and about one third cited security as concerns for blockchain adoption.

Accenture group CEO of financial services Richard Lumb said: “Cross-border payments are ripe for innovation using blockchain and distributed ledger technologies. The technology could resolve inefficiencies and friction that have long driven up the costs – and the time – required to move money around the world.

“Blockchain has proven its scalability to support such infrastructure. And as the industry sets its focus on developing the networks, business processes and standards needed to run these systems, payments could be one of the first major proving grounds for enterprise blockchain adoption.”