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HSBC, ING complete first live blockchain-powered trade finance transaction

HSBC

HSBC Singapore and Dutch multinational ING have announced the successful completion of the world’s first live trade finance transaction using blockchain, executed using R3’s Corda platform.

The transaction involved the shipment of soybeans from Argentina, through Geneva, to Malaysia, courtesy of Cargill and its Singapore subsidiary acting as the purchaser.

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Its success marks a milestone for blockchain in way of it being used more readily in common transactions processes, such as issuing letters of credit.

Banks have been investing heavily in blockchain projects, with many within the financial world recognising the potential disruption that the technology can bring to the industry.

“What this means for businesses is that trade finance transactions have been made simpler, faster, more transparent and more secure,” said Vivek Ramachandran, HSBC’s Head of Growth and Innovation.

“The need for paper reconciliation is removed because all parties are linked on the platform and updates are instantaneous. The quick turnaround could mean unlocking liquidity for businesses.”

In March, ING also completed the first live lending securities transaction with Credit Suisse using R3’s Corda blockchain platform, where $30mn was transferred using digital collateral records.

R3 and the 12 banks that support Corda are looking to further expand its use industry in the aim of driving greater adoption across the financial industry.

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