The peak self-regulatory body for China’s banking sector has announced the launch of a blockchain-based platform to improve the efficiency of Chinese trade finance.
The “China Trade Finance Inter-bank Trade Blockchain Platform” (中国贸易金融跨行交易区块链平台) officially commenced operation on 29 December according to an official statement from the China Banking Association (CBA).
The platform was developed by CBA in conjunction with a slew of leading Chinese lenders, including the China Development Bank, ICBC, the Agricultural Bank of China, Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Bank of Communications, China Merchants Bank, China Everbright Bank, China CITIC Bank, China Minsheng Bank, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, Pingan Bank, the Postal Savings Bank of China and HSBC.
CBA said that its leadership of the project ensures that the platform will be endowed with “greater natural neutrality and fairness.”
Over ten banks have already completed two online tests of the platform which satisfied the project’s benchmark, while ICBC and China Merchants Bank completed the first inter-bank domestic letter of credit chain verification following the platform’s official launch.
According to CBA the the goal of the platform is to “prevent financial risk, deepen financial reforms [and] change the financial development method,” by achieving “standardisation, digitisation and smart transformation of interbank trade finance product transaction information…creating an entirely new trade finance ecosystem, and setting a key foundation for raising the efficiency of financial services.”
“The platform is based on the distributed data storage of blockchain technology, and can satisfy the management and operational needs of banks that engage in interbank trade finance operations with regard to information circulation, data security, privacy protection and transaction execution.
“Without changing the respective procedures of banks themselves, [the platform] digitises and improves the convenience of interbank transactions.”