November 3, 2019 — Mr. Kalin Sarasin, Chairman of The Joint Standing Committee of Commerce, Industry and Banking (JSCCIB) of Thailand announced today that it has successfully completed a trial of a trade platform incorporating NTT DATA’s blockchain technology. NTT DATA, which is developing a digital trade solution in Japan, collaborated with JSCCIB in studying the feasibility and benefits of a cross-industry trade platform under Thailand’s National Digital Trade Platform (NDTP) project.
Mr. Kalin also touched on the development of Digital Trade Network in ASEAN region that ASEAN Digital Trade Transformation project has been endorsed in ASEAN-BAC meeting in January 2019. The project has been started and it has been progressing well. The project will turn the page of ASEAN's international trade as it will help improve the efficiency both in terms of the processing costs and time of trade transactions by digitalizing the entire processes. Other benefits include improving SME ability to participate more in the economy and access to finance, preventing double financing and fraud documents, and Ease of Doing business rating of the country.
Dr. Kobsak Pootrakool, Deputy Secretary General to the Prime Minister, stated that the NDTP project is a private-sector initiative led by JSCCIB in Thailand to build a B2B trade platform for international trade. The cabinet of Thailand endorsed the project and assigned the Office of the Public Sector Development Commission and Digital Government Development Agency to work with related agencies and JSCCIB. The prime minister has called on all sectors to help develop the digital platform as part of the national agenda, aiming to link it with the National Single Window and platforms of other ASEAN and major trade partner countries for trade facilitation.
Mr. Hironari Tomioka, President and CEO of NTT Data Thailand, said that the benefits of using electronic trade documents for international trade were examined by 47 trial participants from 24 cross-industry companies, including Thai banks, Thai forwarders, Thai carriers, Thai exporters, Thai insurers, Thai certificate of origin providers and Japanese importer, took part. Trade documents such as purchase orders, invoices, shipping instructions, sea waybills, certificates of origin, export permits, insurance policies and trade finance documents were used in mock business scenarios during the trial.
The trade platform deployed blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI) and other digital technologies. NTT DATA has been developing the platform in Japan through discussions with cross–industry companies consortium. The consortium was established in 2017 by NTT DATA, with members from banks, insurance companies, cargo owners and carries/logistics companies who share a mutual interest in paperless international trade.
The trial achieved up to 60% faster processing of document processing, including preparation and delivery, which normally takes hours or even days to complete. It also confirmed that sharing information via the trade platform using blockchain technology can prevent the illegal practice of double financing, or receiving redundant financing from multiple financial institutions.
A number of supportive comments were received in regard to the trial’s successful results:
Warawuth Siwaborwornwatana, Business Development Executive of World United Logistics said,
“The completion of this platform will help to reduce the paperwork and time involved in document preparation. Since users can reuse information from previous transactions, the platform also will significantly reduce possible mistakes during the reentering of data.”
Therdpong Kanarak, Assistant Vice President-Brand Sales (International) of Malee International Company Limited said,
“This platform supports the faster filing of data compared to sending trade documents in Excel worksheets and entering data on the website of each vessel carrier.”
Nattapon Dejvitak, Head of Business Requirements Working Group for JSCCIB said,
“We found it is a single integrated digital platform that connects all parties and enables the exchange of trade related data and document digitally. The time and cost of export and import will be reduced dramatically, the risk of financial fraud will be mitigated, and the process of logistic and insurance arrangement will be streamlined through the platform.”
Parnkae Nandavisai, NDTP Business Requirements Working Group Executive for JSCCIB said,
“The test provided the participants with hands-on experience and opportunities for open discussion regarding needs and requirements of the ongoing NDTP project. We appreciate the time and resources NTT DATA allocated to prepare and conduct the test.”
Ken Tsuchihashi, Senior Vice President and Head of China and APAC for NTT DATA Corporation and concurrent President & CEO of NTT DATA Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd. said,
“We greatly appreciated conducting this trial with JSCCIB, which has been actively initiating trade digitalization in Thailand. This was a valuable opportunity for both parties to confirm the advantages and challenges of introducing a digital platform for international trade. We look forward to continuing our close work with JSCCIB to facilitate trade between Thailand and Japan.”
NTT DATA aims to realize 100% paperless international trade that eliminates the need for paper documents and increases the efficiency of trade procedures. The company plans to introduce its trade platform in the ASEAN region in cooperation with local government agencies and service providers, ultimately for the economic benefit of the respective countries.