The World Economic Forum’s recent report that the Bitcoin block chain would be worth 10% of the world’s GDP by 2027 did not give solid figures, for starters. But as noted in the report, and elsewhere, the WEF is referring to the overall value stored on the block chain – not to bitcoins themselves, necessarily. The report specifically says, on page 24:
Smartcontracts.com provides programmable contracts that do payouts between two parties once certain criteria have been met, without involving a middleman. These contracts are secured in the blockchain as “self-executing contractual states”, which eliminate the risk of relying on others to follow through on their commitments.
The estimated $20 billion value of the block chain is also not referring solely to the worth of bitcoins, but rather to all value currently secured by it via things like smart contracts, Factom, and so forth. It is quite feasible that far more than 10% of the world’s GDP could be on “block chain technology,” which doesn’t even necessarily have to refer to the Bitcoin block chain.
As the report says, “disintermediation of financial institutions, as new services and value exchanges are created directly on the blockchain.” This means that