Blockchain Trade Finance Platform Ready in Hong Kong
A blockchain trade finance platform developed by eight banks, including HSBC and Standard Chartered, is getting ready for commercial launch.
After completing over $30 million worth of letter-of-credit transactions last year during its trial phase, the Contour blockchain trade finance platform is ready to be launched in the second half of the year.
Letters of credit using blockchain have facilitated commercial trades amongst companies even as the new coronavirus epidemic disrupts trade, said Ajay Sharma, HSBC’s regional head of global trade and receivables finance for Asia-Pacific. «Leveraging blockchain for trade finance has overcome the physical constraints we are having today,» said Sharma, who was quoted in «South China Morning Post».
Available In China and Singapore
Besides HSBC and Standard Chartered, the other six banks that have invested in the new company include CTBC Holding, ING, Bangkok Bank, BNP Paribas, SEB, and Citi. Last October, Singapore launched its first blockchain-based trade finance platform.
In China, blockchain-backed trade finance is already widely adopted. Around 170 banks in China have joined the blockchain platform spearheaded by the State Administration of Foreign Exchange to provide trade finance to their clients, according to data from the People’s Bank of China.