SMEs Face Significant Financing Gap

Speaking at the World Trade Organization’s annual “aid-for-trade” review earlier this month, a representative of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) made a plea for added financing for cross-border trade.

ICC Senior Policy Manager Thierry Senechal said that trade finance intermediation is crucial today as it provides real-time risk mitigation, while improving liquidity and cash flow of the trading parties. It also gives localized small- and medium-sized enterprises much-needed access to credit and working capital to finance exports and imports.

Between 80 and 90 percent of global trade depends on some sort of trade finance, yet structural access issues, related to factors such as poorly-developed banking sectors or perceived country credit risk, continue to act as bottlenecks.

In remarks at the event, WTO Director General Pascal Lamy said: “Overcoming existing skills gaps in developing countries can help them draw enhanced benefits from their participation in the multilateral trading system. These discussions have brought some key areas into focus, including access to finance — and trade finance in particular.”

Click here to read more on ICC’s website.

Staff contact: Eva Hampl

More on USCIB’s Banking Committee

ICC names Donald Smith New Banking Commission Technical Advisor

ICC announced earlier this month the appointment of three new technical advisors for its Commission on Banking – a leading global policy and rule-making body for the banking industry known worldwide for its trade finance products and services including Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits, the most successful privately drafted rules for trade ever developed.

These  include Donald Smith, president of Global Trade Advisory Ltd.

Smith has over 40 years’ experience in international banking operations and trade product management. He has been responsible for international operations for 4 banks. He served as senior project manager for the ICC’s 2011 Basel III Default Registry project which documented the level of risk in trade transactions; chaired the US Delegation to the ICC Banking Commission from 1998 to 2009 and co-chaired the drafting group which produced the ICC’s first International Standard Banking Practices (ISBP) publication. He presently serves on several ICC Task Forces. Read more on ICC’s website.

Staff Contact:   Alice Slayton Clark

Director, Investment, Trade and China
Tel: 202.682.0051

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