New version of Global Trade Modernization Index launches to accelerate digital trade 

  • 25 March 2024

The ICC Digital Standards Initiative, the Asia Global Institute and Milken Institute have announced the launch of the BETA version of the Global Trade Modernization Index (GTMI) in Hong Kong. The new version marks the first update of the ALPHA version launched in March 2023.

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This 2024 version incorporates new data, small tweaks of the methodology, expert insights from the organisers as well as a Digital Policy Alert. The launch aims to highlight how economies can build their digital trade readiness through five linked pillars: (1) Paperless Trade, (2) Trade Openness, (3) Regulatory Environment, (4) Business Readiness, and (5) Human Capital. The index aggregates 27 indicators to evaluate 65 economies. 

Notable insights in the BETA version include:   

The Index aims to enable a conversation with policymakers about building the capabilities that support an economy and its businesses to engage fruitfully in digital trade.  

Professor Heiwai Tang, Director of the Asia Global Institute, said:

“In today’s digital era, trade plays a vital role in economic growth and we are committed to showcasing how countries can maximise their advantage through digital trade.” 

Kevin Klowden, Executive Director of the Milken Institute, said:

The factor of human capital fundamentally represents the ability of skilled workers in a country to actually learn, implement and benefit from paperless trade.”   

Curtis S. Chin, Milken Institute Chair, Asia Fellows, and Senior Advisor, Global Markets said:

“In an increasingly divided world, it is terrific to see our organisations coming together for digital trade, which is a powerful force to bridge divides and has huge potential in Asia to drive prosperity and growth.” 

Pamela Mar, Managing Director of the ICC Digital Standards Initiative, said:

Through the GTMI, we hope to engage leaders in the public and private sectors around  pillars that support an economy to engage in digital trade.  They will drive an economy to apply standards, build digital trust, and implement legal reforms.” 

ICC Digital Standards Initiative 

Hosted by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the Digital Standards Initiative is committed to promoting policy coherence and harmonizing digital trading standards for the benefit of businesses, governments, and people everywhere. Working with established standard-setting bodies and international organizations, the ICC Digital Standards Initiative will drive greater adoption of existing standards and create new frameworks to unify digital trade processes. 

Asia Global Institute 

Asia Global Institute is a multidisciplinary think tank co-established by The University of Hong Kong and the Fung Global Institute. The Institute’s mission is to generate and disseminate research and ideas on global issues from Asian perspectives. It aims to inform global policy and actions towards a prosperous and sustainable future for all. 

Milken Institute 

The Milken Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank focused on accelerating measurable progress on the path to a meaningful life. With a focus on financial, physical, mental, and environmental health, we bring together the best ideas and innovative resourcing to develop blueprints for tackling some of our most critical global issues through the lens of what’s pressing now and what’s coming next.