Did you miss the ACITI webinar Realising Paperless Trade?

Published: November 8, 2023
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In case you missed ACITI webinar that took place on November 1, don’t worry here is Bryan Clark’s, Director at ACITI and moderator, summary including link to the full recording of the seminar:

On Wednesday evening our 7th webinar featured discussion and presentation by Gunnar Collin and Ulf Eggefors from Enigio based in Stockholm about the practical application of electronic documents in the supply chain.

The recording is available here and I encourage you to circulate this information to your networks.

Key points from the discussion were for me:

  • “If you don’t know the solution exists, you won’t ask for it”.
    • Easy to implement digital solutions are now available and this is further assisted by MLETR.
  • Barriers for replacing paper in global trade include:
    • Regulations – Model law on Electronic Transferable Recorded needed to overcome this
    • Industry practice – plenty of paper still used
    • Interoperability – how to be digital with everyone?
    • Data integrity – need to be able to share data with integrity and adhering to privacy laws
  • All of these barriers need to be addressed in order to effectively embrace digital trade.
  • The MLETR doesn’t supersede existing laws, it assists to ensure adherence to current laws can be undertaken in an electronic form.
  • Implementing MLETR requires engagement with the private sector at the earliest stage
  • ICC Digital Standards Initiative work on Key Document and data Elements (KTDDE) is an excellent collation of documentary requirements across supply chains and the potential to develop APIs.
  • Paper documents are already a standard that has a history across centuries. The issue is not to bring this into the digital age.
  • Enigio’s trace:original solution brings papers documents into the digital age.
    • Any standards can be used
    • One document owner, one document, many users
    • Low cost system available now and work with existing business practices
    • Accepts any type of electronic signatures
      • Captures both the identity and the intent of the decision maker
    • Can be additionally endorsed
    • Protects business and personal data outside of the document
    • Cryptographically sealed documents
    • Key pair process to ensure document integrity.
    • Document versions and keys held on a distributed ledger (not the data of the document itself)
    • trace:original is already in use in the UK, Europe, India and elsewhere
      • Pilots operating in Latin America and West Africa. India already accepts digital documents
      • Example showed use of these documents reduced the time taken from 9 days to 1 day.
        • Reduced courier costs, increased security, lowered fraud risk and lowered environmental impacts.
  • Current paper-based trade systems have low integrity. trace:original features:
    • Human readable form
    • Machine readable form
    • Can include attachments
    • Executed using electronic signatures and seals
    • Immutable, verifiable and fraud protected via blockchain.
  • Digital documents become assets
  • System can be used for all types of documents
    • Trade, finance, title, educations certificates, logistics systems, etc.
  • Digital documents have ESG benefits assisting the meet UN SDG goals.
    • reduced carbon footprint
    • SME growth and prosperity
    • Innovation and infrastructure
  • Current historic paper-based data business process systems can remain in place.
  • Digital implementation needs to be led by large commercial traders and carriers to demonstrate the benefits to the wider community.
  • trace:original isn’t a platform solution
    • It only creates documents
    • The system doesn’t hold the original data
    • The users control security factors
      • Corporate seals and signatures
        • Electronic signatures can be used including different levels of security as required
        • The “authority” of the person is also a developing feature (quite advanced in Sweden)
  • Paper doesn’t provide good assurance now.
  • Laws need to recognise documents in digital forms. About 70% of global trade operates under English law.
    • ICC has eUCP frameworks which also assist
  • Agencies can use this system today as it can be both machine readable and human readable.
  • Ocean freight shippers are pushing ports to adopt digital systems
  • It would assist firms like Enigio if Australia adopted the same things the UK is adopting – eg MLETR
    • But there is no restriction on using this system now if the commercial sector uses UK law as the base for contracts.
    • Non-title commercial documents can use this system easily now
  • ICC national bodies are actively supporting digitalisation of supply chains and working with regulators in each nation which is providing momentum to digital trade reforms.
    • Corporates and trade associations need to get on board as early as they can.


Reference websites:

trace:original – Enigio

Free document notary verification site traceoriginal.com