On the 5th July, Global eTrade Services (GeTS) announced that it will produce blockchain based electronic Certificates of Origin (eCOs) for internationally traded goods. The eCOs are now available on the firm’s Open Trade Blockchain (OTB) platform in partnership with the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCCI).
Certificates of Origin provide proof that imported goods came from a particular country. They mostly serve as a confirmation of the source for setting tax, duty and product transparency. In some cases, COs are crucial to upholding deals between countries where, for instance, they have reduced trade duties.
Friday’s announcement claims over 30,000 COs are produced annually in Singapore. Chambers of Commerce issue the certificates and provide a verification service. According to the International Chamber of Commerce, the figure is in the millions globally. GeTS, along with the Chinese chamber in Singapore SCCCI, claims that the conventional system is a far cry from the efficiency, trust, and ease of use of blockchain document management.
The partnership’s solution utilizes the up and running OTB to issue, manage, and share eCOs. The blockchain platform acts as a single source of trust, so parties involved do not have to rely on lengthy checks, and the risk of fraud is reduced.
GeTS also addresses safety concerns as the platform provides an immutable audit trail, key for tracing the origin and movements of recalled or contaminated goods. This is crucial when food, medication, or automobiles are traded internationally. The secure blockchain platform allows for transparent storage of compliance data across the supply chain.
Roland Ng, the President of SCCCI, is optimistic about the technology: “The partnership with GeTS will empower businesses to expand their global footprint with ease, enhance their productivity, and help our members to harness the business opportunities using a trusted, secure, borderless and seamless blockchain technology.”
Indeed, the SCCCI includes representatives from over 40,000 firms worldwide to bolster the Chinese business network in Singapore.
The Chairman of GeTS, Eugene Wong, stated: “Blockchain will transform international trade, and the OTB platform is the perfect solution to bridge and create a neutral layer of trust among multiple stakeholders, allowing them to collaborate and access to trade documents securely.”
The OTB was released a year ago for blockchain management of digital trade documents. It is also used as part of GeTS’ shipping logistics platform CALISTA which boasts partners such as Pacific International Lines.