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ICC’s global campaign to support MSMEs with innovative trade finance solutions

ICC Trade Now is the dedicated global campaign of the International Chamber of Commerce that will offer a platform connecting micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to innovative trade finance solutions. Through tailored partnerships with cutting edge solution providers, ICC Trade Now will help scale up and leverage game-changing products and services to tackle the global trade finance gap in all its breadth and complexity.

On the launch of ICC Trade Now, ICC Secretary General John W.H. Denton AO said:

“Small businesses around the world continue to suffer from uncertain economic conditions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. With credit conditions tightening, MSMEs are in desperate need of solutions that will enable them to trade now. That’s why ICC is leveraging our global network of 45 million businesses in over 100 countries to launch ICC Trade Now and connect small businesses with financial service providers. By working with trusted partners, ICC Trade Now will revitalize MSMEs everywhere and enable them to lead for the long-term.”

Why ICC Trade Now?

International trade is a key driver of growth and innovation for MSMEs worldwide. Yet, over 45% of MSMEs see their requests for trade finance rejected and often struggle to find alternative sources of funding. Without adequate access to capital, MSMEs are effectively cut off from international markets and unable to grow their operations to meet international demand. Coupled with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, MSMEs desperately need short-term liquidity and access to international trade to survive the ongoing economic crisis and thrive once the worst effects of the crisis have subsided.

Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre (ITC) said:

“Faced with the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, SMEs need secure supplies of trade finance to survive. Addressing the trade finance gap now will reduce obstacles to trade in the future and keep the global economy moving forward. ICC Trade Now is a positive step towards a full recovery and ITC looks forward to working with ICC to bring solutions to the thousands of SMEs it works with in developing countries.”

What are the objectives of ICC Trade Now?

  1. Scale up innovative trade finance solutions

The digitisation of trade finance and technology solutions offer new opportunities for banks and non-bank financiers to serve MSMEs profitably. As the institutional representative of 45 million businesses in 100 countries, ICC is in a unique position to help scale up innovative trade finance solutions by connecting solution providers to our global network through tailored partnerships.

  1. Empower Small and Medium-sized Enterprises

If MSMEs are going to survive the ongoing economic crisis, they need tools and solutions that will enable them to Trade Now. The ICC Trade Now campaign will ensure that all MSMEs can harness the immense transformative power of digital technologies and access innovative trade finance solutions that will ultimately help them seize new business opportunities.

  1. Create new investment opportunities for financiers

ICC Trade Now will help unlock new investment opportunities for a broad set of financiers by leveraging digital tools and solutions that address traditional market frictions. Digital intermediation can help reduce transaction costs and increase the profitability of previously unserved funding requests, opening new material opportunities for financiers.

  1. Tackle the trade finance gap

While the trade finance gap was estimated at US$1.5 trillion pre-COVID-19, forecasts now show that the mismatch between demand for and supply of trade finance will reach at least $2.5 trillion by 2025. Left unaddressed, the growing trade finance gap will doom any prospects of long term economic recovery. The ICC Trade Now campaign will federate innovative solutions and leverage synergies between solutions to help bridge the trade finance gap.

Ambassador Jose Luis Cancela, Permanent Observer of Uruguay to the World Trade Organization and Coordinator of the Informal Working Group on Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) said:

“SMEs continue to suffer under the weight of the COVID-19 pandemic. More than anything else, these companies need tools and resources that will help them access short-term liquidity and keep international trade moving. We welcome solutions like ICC TRADE NOW to provide SMEs with a lifeline to avert the worst effects of the crisis and ensure an inclusive recovery for all.”


How will ICC Trade Now work?

Under the ICC Trade Now campaign, ICC will offer an online platform that features innovative trade finance service providers and connects them to the ICC network of 45 million MSMEs. The platform will ensure that MSMEs gain access to cutting-edge solutions and unlock value through trade finance products and services. Partners under ICC Trade Now will join a growing community of innovative trade finance service providers who are eager to collaborate and leverage synergies in order to advance ICC’s core mission of supporting the real economy.

Dr Victor K. Fung, Chairman of the Fung Group and Chair of ICC’s Advisory Group on Trade Finance said:

“In the current context of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s essential that SMEs receive secure lines of capital, so that they can trade in international markets and grow their operations. By fully leveraging the transformative power of digital technologies, ICC Trade Now will create more favorable conditions for banks and non-bank financiers to service SMEs profitably and establish conditions for a resilient economic recovery.”

Join the ICC Trade Now community today.

In the coming months, ICC will continue to develop and onboard new solutions and initiatives to accelerate the provision of trade finance to MSMEs. Urgent action is required to bridge the widening trade finance gap and ICC is determined to help MSMEs access trade finance every day, everywhere. Join our growing ICC Trade Now community and stay up-to-date with the latest news and information by registering as

ICC is working with the following innovative trade service providers to ensure that small businesses have the necessary tools and resources to trade now:


ICC and Finastra have partnered to create ICC TRADECOMM, an online financing marketplace that will allow investors to benefit from reduced compliance costs and finance trade transactions against SME e-invoices.

TradeFlow Management

TradeFlow enables global physical commodity trade for SMEs via its innovative non-credit, non-lending model which transforms trade into an investment grade portfolio which financiers can profitably lend against or invest in.


FQX provides the innovative eNote(TM) Infrastructure which enables the issuance, transfer and settlement of electronic promissory notes for obtaining and providing trade finance in 152 countries of the world. The infrastructure is built on a banking-grade enterprise Blockchain and uses qualified electronic signatures for highest data integrity.