The ICC is set to sign a cooperation agreement with Swift to enable industry-wide adoption of its Bank Payment Obligation (BPO).

This agreement aims to widen market acceptance of the BPO instrument following its launch in March 2010.

The BPO provides the benefits of a letter of credit and enables banks to offer flexible risk mitigation and financing services across the supply chain.

Gottfried Leibbrandt, head of marketing at Swift explains: “Industry forecasts indicate that merchandise exports are set to grow to US$33trn by 2020, from 15 today. We are committed to help our members innovate in trade finance for corporates.”

Tan Kah Chye, Barclays’ global head of trade & working capital and chairman of the ICC Banking Commission adds: “Trade finance is a critical banking service supporting the world economy. It is vital that the industry aligns on enhanced rules and tools in support of trading counterparties, whether large or smaller.