According to the 2019 ADB Trade Finance Gap, Growth, and Jobs Survey, the global trade finance gap stood at around $1.5 trillion in the pre-COVID era. Disproportionality affecting SMEs (45% of trade finance applications by surveyed SMEs are rejected by banks), it impacts on the full potential of trade-led growth.
Following the global trade collapse in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the global trade finance gap is expected to widen and potentially increase up to $2.5 trillion by 2025 according to ICC.
Against the background, in continuity with the WTO, ICC and B20 call for action to narrow the growing trade finance gap (9 July 2020) various initiatives have generated substantial interest among development banks and export-import banks, international finance institutions, regulators, commercial banks, and professional associations.
In this context, the potential of fintech and digitization has not yet been fully realised and will be a driving force in addressing the gap between supply and demand for trade finance for SMEs.
The webinar offered the opportunity to take stock of recent initiatives aimed at improving access to trade finance for SMEs through transactional connectivity.
Held on 28 April 2021, the webinar benefited from the expertise of the following institutions:
- International Chamber of Commerce (iCC)
- Pan African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS)
- World Trade Organization (WTO)