SG-AUS blockchain trial on reduced transaction costs reaches promising conclusion

The blockchain makes issuing digital trade documents fast, secure, and cost-effective.

The blockchain trial for simpler cross-border trade between Singapore and Australia ended successfully, the Australian Border Force (ABF) and Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) Singapore, and Singapore Customs announced in a joint press statement.

A part of the Australia-Singapore Digital Economy Agreement, the trial successfully tested the interoperability of two digital verification systems: ABF’s Intergovernmental Ledger (IGL) and IMDA’s TradeTrust reference implementation.

It concluded that Australia is capable of issuing high integrity digital trade documents that can instantly be authenticated, provenance traced, and digitally processed through QR-codes embedded into the digital Certificates of Origin (COOs).

“A key success of the trial is the acceptance of verifiable COOs by a regulatory authority, Singapore Customs. Trial participants from the industry, including the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Australian Industry Group, ANZ Bank, DBS Bank, Standard Chartered and Rio Tinto, noted the benefits of improved efficiency through time and cost savings by using verifiable COOs,” the press statement read.

The IGL aims to remove the need for paper documents and reduce transaction costs for Australian businesses, and it used Singapore’s TradeTrust framework as the underlying technology to allow interoperability.

“TradeTrust helps verify documents for more efficient cross-border trade. This successful trial demonstrates TradeTrust’s value as a framework to connect governments and businesses for more effective trade flow,” said IMDA chief executive Lew Chuen Hong.

Transactions between the two nations can soon become more cost-effective and scalable, without the need for expensive data exchange infrastructure, lowering the barriers to the adoption of paperless cross-border trade.

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