ICC announces formation of new Industry Advisory Board (IAB) to support the Digital Standards Initiative

  • 20 August 2021

ICC has today announced the formation of a new Industry Advisory Board (IAB) to support the growing mandate of the ICC Digital Standards Initiative (DSI). Gerard Hartsink has been appointed Chair of the Board.

As part of our drive to promote inclusion and create opportunity for all parties involved in the international supply chain, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) launched the Digital Standards Initiative (DSI) in 2020 in partnership with the Asian Development Bank and the Government of Singapore to establish a globally harmonised, digitalised trade environment.

The new Industry Advisory Board will work under the auspices of the DSI Governance Board and will comprise 30 industry leaders from a broad range of industry verticals and geographical regions who share a passion for solving key challenges facing international trade digitisation efforts. Members include strategic organisations such as GS1, WCO, IPCSA, SWIFT, GLEIF, BIMCO, FIATA, DCSA, Freight and logistics, Banks, Retailers and Commodity companies.

The new Advisory Board – appointed on a rolling basis starting today by ICC Secretary General John W.H. Denton AO – is headed by Gerard Hartsink, Industry expert and ICC Senior Advisor (Netherlands) as its new Chairman.

Commenting on the appointment, Mr Denton said:

“Less than a year since the ICC Digital Standards Initiative became operational, I am happy to share that the initiative has gained significant momentum. We have always recognised the need to foster a strong nexus between industry and the DSI to ensure that DSI’s focus and implementation plans remain relevant to the needs of international business everywhere. The formation of the Industry Advisory Board is the first step in that process.

“I look forward to working with Gerard and strongly believe that the diversity represented in the Industry Advisory Board will result in balanced and inclusive views which would help guide the work of the DSI in the coming period.”

Newly appointed Chair of the DSI Industry Advisory Board, Gerard Hartsink said:

“I’m honoured to take the helm of the newly formed Industry Advisory Board. My immediate focus would be to rally support and energy behind DSI’s main work pillars, namely, to harmonise technical standards for data formats and business processes for international trade; scale up adoption and solve interoperability issues in cooperation with Standards Development Organisations; and advocate for an enabling legal environment that will recognise the use of electronic transferable records, among others. With these pillars firmly in place, we stand a good chance to be able to move all businesses involved in the international supply chain into the digital age.”

ICC recently announced that Hannah Nguyen will support Oswald Kuyler as DSI Deputy Director. Her task includes engaging industry participants, SDOs, technology solution providers, governments and intergovernmental organisations to coordinate standardisation efforts across the ecosystem.

“To accelerate the convergence of digital processes, we really need to ensure that the work we do removes all the different sources of friction in both B2B and B2G processes”, said Hannah. “The Industry Advisory Board is the perfect avenue to gather feedback, recommendation, and ideas about a wide range of topics that will enrich this ambitious collective endeavour. I look forward to working with Oswald, Gerard and all IAB members in this exciting journey that we just began”.