2020 GLOBAL SURVEY REPORT
This year’s Global Survey indicates that banks are optimistic about the long-term future of trade finance and are looking to invest further.
Industry and regulators may emerge from the crisis determined to do away with the anachronistic and inefficient system of paper-based trade
In critical in times of crisis, The ICC Global Survey provides robust data, and solid content to help shape strategic decisions, inform policy and underpin crucial international dialogue.
Greater access to the global financial system would narrow the gaps between developed and developing countries.
COVID-19 accelerated the digitisation of trade agenda in ways that were unimaginable a year ago.
Government and industry collaboration is a critical foundation to overcome criminal exploitation of our interconnected trade, financial systems and global communities
Lack of inclusion of SMEs in global trade is measured globally as a finance problem, but at its heart, it is a data problem
Ongoing efforts to define the pathway for sustainable trade and expand its positive impact continue ICC’s rules setting tradition
The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) can create a market with GDP of USD 2.5 trillion and a population of over 1 billion. I see it as a great opportunity for the SIT outreach team and the ICC itself
John Denton
John W.H. Denton AO
Secretary General, International Chamber of Commerce
Sukand Ramachandran, Partner and Managing Director, BCG
Sukand Ramachandran
Partner and Managing Director, BCG
Alexander Malaket
Chair of the ICC Global Survey on Trade Finance
Steven Beck
Steven Beck
Head of Trade Finance, Asian Development Bank, Trade Finance Program
Alisa DiCaprio
Alisa DiCaprio
Head of Trade and Supply Chain, R3
Richard Bunting
Richard Bunting
Principal Specialist, Intelligence Partnerships, AUSTRAC
Catherine Nomura
President and Founder, Kountable
Roberto Leva
Trade & Supply Chain Finance Relationship Manager Asian Development Bank
Mr. Samuel Ansah
Ecobank, Africa

Highlights

Assessing the impact of COVID-19

The rapid spread of COVID-19 has created an unprecedented environment for trade, disrupting economic activity and the flow of goods across supply chains.

To quantify the likely impact of the pandemic on the trade finance industry, the report contains results from two additional projects.

  • An ICC-BCG partnership to model scenarios on how COVID-19 could disrupt trade
  • A supplementary COVID-19 survey to understand banks’ sentiment regarding the initial impact of the pandemic on trade finance

What does your bank anticipate to be the COVID-19 impact on 2020 trade flows?

No impact 3%
0-10% decrease 9%
10-20% decrease 25%
20-30% decrease 28%
30-40% decrease 15%
40-50% decrease 12%
50%+ decrease 8%

Where will future gains come from?

Protectionism, transformative technologies, shifting economic trends… Trade and trade finance are in a state of global uncertainty. So where are banks looking to secure future growth?

New players, new places: Banks expect medium-term gains from non-bank entities and greater geographical coverage.

Please indicate what you consider to be the priority areas of development and strategic focus for your bank:

Now/immediate future
(next 12 months)

Traditional trade finance 70%
Emerging technology, digital trade and online trade platforms 54%
Supply chain finance 53%
New alliances between banks and fintechs 43%
Organisational structural reform towards transaction banking 38%
Investments in cash management and markets capabilities 34%
Increase in geographic/ client coverage 32%
Financing new sectors 26%
Attraction of non-bank capital to create additional trade financing 19%
Decrease in geographic/ client coverage 10%

The near future
(next 1-3 years)

Traditional trade finance 16%
Emerging technology, digital trade and online trade platforms 30%
Supply chain finance 33%
New alliances between banks and fintechs 35%
Organisational structural reform towards transaction banking 34%
Investments in cash management and markets capabilities 27%
Increase in geographic/ client coverage 30%
Financing new sectors 45%
Attraction of non-bank capital to create additional trade financing 26%
Decrease in geographic/ client coverage 10%

The longer term
(next 3-5 years)

Traditional trade finance 7%
Emerging technology, digital trade and online trade platforms 14%
Supply chain finance 10%
New alliances between banks and fintechs 13%
Organisational structural reform towards transaction banking 10%
Investments in cash management and markets capabilities 20%
Increase in geographic/ client coverage 12%
Financing new sectors 12%
Attraction of non-bank capital to create additional trade financing 12%
Decrease in geographic/ client coverage 2%

Not a
priority

Traditional trade finance 8%
Emerging technology, digital trade and online trade platforms 2%
Supply chain finance 5%
New alliances between banks and fintechs 9%
Organisational structural reform towards transaction banking 18%
Investments in cash management and markets capabilities 18%
Increase in geographic/ client coverage 25%
Financing new sectors 16%
Attraction of non-bank capital to create additional trade financing 42%
Decrease in geographic/ client coverage 77%

Trade finance barriers: What might stand in the way of future growth?

From new regulatory regimes to fintech disruption, what do banks see as the biggest obstacles to future trade finance growth?

It’s all about compliance

Please find a list of potential obstacles to your bank’s growth prospects in the financing of international trade. How concerned is your bank, if at all, about each of these?

Extremely
concerned

AML/ KYC requirements 63%
Counter-terrorism and international sanctions regulation and compliance 61%
High transaction costs or low fee income 50%
Basel capital regulatory requirements 47%
Increasing protectionism, trade-restrictive measures, trade tensions and global economic uncertainty 33%

Somewhat
concerned

AML/ KYC requirements 21%
Counter-terrorism and international sanctions regulation and compliance 18%
High transaction costs or low fee income 33%
Basel capital regulatory requirements 31%
Increasing protectionism, trade-restrictive measures, trade tensions and global economic uncertainty 49%

Not very
concerned

AML/ KYC requirements 11%
Counter-terrorism and international sanctions regulation and compliance 15%
High transaction costs or low fee income 11%
Basel capital regulatory requirements 14%
Increasing protectionism, trade-restrictive measures, trade tensions and global economic uncertainty 9%

Not at all
concerned

AML/ KYC requirements 2%
Counter-terrorism and international sanctions regulation and compliance 4%
High transaction costs or low fee income 3%
Basel capital regulatory requirements 2%
Increasing protectionism, trade-restrictive measures, trade tensions and global economic uncertainty 4%

Don’t
know

AML/ KYC requirements 3%
Counter-terrorism and international sanctions regulation and compliance 2%
High transaction costs or low fee income 3%
Basel capital regulatory requirements 6%
Increasing protectionism, trade-restrictive measures, trade tensions and global economic uncertainty 5%

Going digital: Where are we at?

From Big Data to blockchain, everyone agrees that digital technologies hold immense transformative potential for the global trade finance industry, which remains largely paper-based. Looking at the reality on the ground, though, how far along are banks in their digital transformation?

Post-paper? Documentary transactions are rarely fully digitised

While progress is being made towards digitalisation, document verification is a notable laggard when it comes to removing the use of physical paper.

To what extent has your bank removed the use of physical paper for documentary transactions?

  • To great extent
  • To some extent
  • To no extent

What’s inside?

Market Outlook on Trade Finance: Covid-19 and beyond

  • Scenario analysis on the impact of COVID-19 on trade finance
    Sukand Ramachandran, Ravi Hanspal and Noah Mayerson, BCG

While global trade remained at a near-record high of USD 18.1 trillion in 2019, the onset of the COVID-19 crisis is expected to dramatically impact both the world economy and global trade in the short-to-medium term. What does COVID-19 mean for international trade and trade finance?


  • The economic impact of COVID-19 on supply chains

Krishnan Ramadurai, ICC Trade Register Ravi Hanspal, BCG

Given the global reach of the pandemic, a common topic for thoughtful commercial and policy consideration is the impact on global supply chains. What is the impact of COVID-19 on supply?

The impact of COVID-19 on trade and trade finance

  • COVID-19 Survey analysis

ICC Banking Commission

To supplement the Global Survey, the ICC Banking Commission launched a short additional survey specifically aimed at understanding the initial impact of COVID-19 on trade finance.


  • SWIFT Trade Traffic: The Year in Review

Huny Garg, SWIFT

The SWIFT interbank payment system offers a bird’s eye view of global trade activity in the last year. It also reveals upcoming changes in messaging standards for trade finance.


  • TXF on Export Finance

Dr Tom Parkman, TXF

A total of 246 individual respondents from banks, export credit agencies (ECAs), exporters, importers (borrowers), law firms and private insurers (brokers and underwriters) share their views in the annual TXF-ICC survey on the export finance market on a range of measures.

Supply Chain Finance

  • Supply chain finance: evolution or implosion?

ICC Global Survey Editorial Committee

Supply chain finance is one of the fastest growing trade finance products and is responsible for the majority of market growth. The Global Survey, however, reveals a stark divide in how trade banks are planning to engage with SCF.

Sustainability

  • ICC: accelerating progress on sustainable trade finance

Roberto Leva and Harriette Resnick, ICC Sustainability Working Group

This feature highlights The Sustainable Trade Finance Working Group’s ongoing efforts to define the pathway for sustainable trade and expand its positive impact.

Regulation and Compliance

  • Regulations in a digital world

Felix Prevost, HSBC

Digital innovations in the space of communication, computing and banking promise to change trade finance. The question we ask is whether regulations can evolve to support these digital innovations?


  • Stronger together: combatting trade-based money laundering

Richard Bunting, AUSTRAC

International trade has increasingly become a target for criminal exploitation, and government and industry must join forces to combat trade-based money laundering.


  • Combating money laundering: improving systems, enabling trade

Can Sutken and Catherine Daza Estrada, Asian Development Bank

Increased trade helps bring developing countries into the global financial system. But financing that trade can be difficult when the process is sometimes stymied by systems aimed to combat money laundering.

Digitisation

  • Digital trade and Covid-19: maintaining the crisis-driven momentum

Alisa DiCaprio, R3; Chris Southworth, ICC UK

This feature focuses on The ICC Digital Trade Roadmap is a  simple framework for governments, institutions and industry to continue the digital gains made during COVID-19.

Financial Inclusion

  • SMEs and the trade finance gap: it’s a data problem…

Catherine Nomura, Kountable

The lack of inclusion of SMEs in global trade is often referenced by the SME trade finance gap, recently, it has become clear that there is a much larger underlying problem. Inclusion shows up and is measured globally as a finance problem, but at its heart, it is a data problem.


  • How to increase the professionalisation of trade finance

Dominic Broom, ICC Banking Commission

At some point in the process of international trade, one of the parties involved will have to be trusted to handle someone else’s money. But who should be trusted? Making sure that the paperwork is correct and enforceable requires an objective and expert third party.


  • Successors in Trade: “Is it time to isolate or time to reach out?”

Ms. Irina Chuvakhina, Priorbank; Ms. Inessa Amirbekyan, ID Bank; Mr. Samuel Ansah, Ecobank; Ms. Antonija Koceva, Komercijalna Bank

In this section, SIT team members currently active in the Outreach Initiative share their experiences and insights and how they can bring new members from new countries into the ICC Banking Commission and the ICC itself.


  • Mind the gap – why we need to think about small exporters

Dr. Rebecca Harding, Coriolis Technologies

Digital trade is widely seen as a key enabler to help banks close the trade finance gap. The challenge is to ensure enough local banks are sufficiently digitally enabled to make it commercially viable to serve the MSME client segment.


About Global Survey 2020: Securing future growth in trade finance

The ICC Banking Commission’s Global Survey report is an unparalleled look into the global trade finance industry. Based on exclusive information from over 346 respondents in 85 countries, the Global Survey offers invaluable perspectives on challenges and opportunities in the trade finance industry from the practitioners themselves. The survey results are bolstered by contributions from an international array of leading voices on trade, including experts from the World Bank, Boston Consulting Group and the World Trade Organization.

Global Survey, global perspective: Respondents around the world

346
banks participated in the 2020 Global Survey, from 85 countries

$9 trillion
Estimated global value of trade finance transactions processed by respondents

90%
of trade finance is provided by 13 banks, or 8% of Global Survey respondents 

  • Western Europe
  • Asia Pacific
  • Central and Eastern Europe
  • Africa
  • Latin America and Caribbean
  • North America
  • Middle East

Report Sponsors

Media Partners

TXF

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