The blockchain technology is revolutionizing the way we do business and the commercial industry is buying into the technology. The Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) will be working with a Fintech company, vCargo Cloud (VCC) to issue blockchain based Electronic certificates of origin (eCOs) in the country. The first Blockchain bases Electronic certificates of origin was Launched in Singapore in May, 2018. It is not a surprise that Kenya is taking a leap in that same direction. The country is making a move to modernise its trade facilitation processes.
Export is one means of generating revenues in a country and eCOs are export documents that certify the country a shipment was manufactured. They are usually among the documents used in a trade finance transaction and are required by customs, banks and traders to verify goods. But with the application of blockchain based eCOs, a more instant digital capture and processing of eCOs is provided. The solution will be built on the blockchain and stored in a private ledger. This means that only customs, banks or any other parties related to the trade cycle can gain access to them.
The CEO of VCC, Desmond Tay tells GTR that the solution will be similar to the one used in Singapore, it will be slightly converted to suit the specifications of the KNCCI. He explains, “After the success in Singapore, we have been trying to bring the blockchain eCO solution to other places around the world. We are in discussions with a few chambers in Africa and Southeast Asia and expect to see further expansion soon.”
Numerous use cases of the Blockchain technology to trade and commerce has been explored by other companies who have begun launching blockchain-based solutions for trade in Africa. For instance, IBM has started on a supply chain finance platform that utilises artificial intelligence (A.I) and the blockchain technology to extend micro-loans to small businesses in Africa. Also, Wala and Block Commodities, a fintech and trader platform respectively, have partnered to launch a cryptocurrency micro loan and commodity financing solution which would provide up to US$10m worth of loans to about 50,000 grassroot farmers in Africa.
On the other hand, VCC is focusing on trading documents. The company already has an office in Nairobi and has plans to expand to Sri Lanka, Japan, Myanmar, as well as numerous East African countries. CEO Tay explains that they are already in talks with chambers in these countries about bringing their platform there.
June 21, 2018