At trade finance events these days, it is difficult to escape the chatter around blockchain. So it was at last week’s GTR Asia Trade and Supply Chain Finance conference in Hong Kong, where the distributed ledger technology dominated discussions.
Most people were keen to discuss where blockchain would apply, precisely, in the trade finance industry: is it a technology with an actual application? Others were certain that it was, and wondered when we would be past the point of proof of concept and pilots, ready for an industry-wide blockchain solution for trade transactions.
Interestingly, three years after the massive metals fraud in Qingdao, many wondered whether – along with tools such as LME Shield – blockchain would be the long-term solution to fraud in the trade and commodity finance businesses.
GTR spoke with Zach Piester, chief development officer of blockchain consultancy Intrepid Ventures, and Connie Leung, financial services industry director at Microsoft, to discuss the progress made in blockchain development for trade finance, and its use in fighting fraud. (Scroll down for video.)