European Commission Planning Tender for International Trade
Last week the Directorate for Trade of the European Commission issued a “pre-announcement” of a blockchain tender for solutions that promote international trade. The plan is to create a list of potential bidders.
Back in March, the Trade department solicited vendors to sign up to a wider list of potential bidders, including for “analytical and feasibility studies of trade-related digital solutions, IT tools and development of related software.”
In the latest declaration, the department requires to recognize the key preference areas for blockchain applications, as well as an evaluation of the relevance and how simple it would be to execute any solution. Part of the work is expected to include delivering prototypes.
The tender is not coming from the technology side, the EU Blockchain Observatory, however straight from the trade department.
The European Commission lately issued a report anticipating a decline of 9.2% in EU exports as a consequence of COVID-19. The World Trade Organization’s (WTO) estimates were even direr, predicting declines in world trade in 2020 of between 13% and 32%.
Aside from the direct disruption created by COVID-19, the crisis has highlighted the urgent need for digitization. Trade finance has been a difficulty because it’s often reliant on paperwork, but bank staff is not in the office. Lately, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) asked for some countries that don’t maintain digital signatures and digital invoices to modify their laws.
Trade finance and supply chain finance are effective ways to help address funding requests. Yesterday the Danish Export Credit Agency declared it would serve as a guarantor for a Tradeshift supply chain finance solution targeted at the 250 biggest buyers. Even though the amount of buyers is small, if most of its suppliers can get direct payment, the ripple effect could be substantial.