HSBC successfully executes steel industry’s first blockchain trade finance deal between UAE and India

HSBC has successfully executed a blockchain-enabled, live trade finance transaction between the UAE’s Universal Tubes & Plastic Industries Ltd. and India’s Tata Steel Ltd. – a global first for the steel industry. The Contour blockchain platform enabled end-to-end digitisation of the documentation required for Universal Tubes to import its order of flat carbon steel to the UAE from Tata Steel in India. 

The transaction is a real case scenario of the operational viability of blockchain as an alternative to conventional exchanges of paper-based documentation. Sunil Veetil, Regional Head of Global Trade & Receivables Finance (GTRF) at HSBC, Middle East, North Africa and Turkey, said, “We are delighted with Universal Tubes’ and Tata Steel’s decisive action to conduct this trade over Contour, which reinforces the commercial and operational viability of blockchain and the Contour platform.” 

HSBC, as the world’s leading trade finance bank,1 is pioneering the transformation of global trade using blockchain technology. By using blockchain, the reduced transaction time will boost the efficiency of trade between the two countries, which is valued at around $60 billion with the UAE being India’s third largest trading partner. 

Anil Taurani, Managing Director, Universal Tubes & Plastic Industries Ltd, UAE, said: “The future of trade is digital and the success of this blockchain transaction encourages us to look forward to linking all our future Letter of Credit transactions to this solution. The speed, visibility, efficiency and enhanced security it offers is a tremendous advantage and opens up immense opportunities for us. Despite the involvement of multiple players, we found the entire experience seamless and transparent.”

Peeyush Gupta, VP (Steel Marketing & Sales), Tata Steel, said: “We continuously leverage our in-house potential and that of the external ecosystems through carefully curated partnerships to drive innovation. Adoption of this platform is in line with our objective of agility and enabling a faceless yet trustworthy all-time interface to better customer experience. This unique initiative, executed in collaboration with HSBC, demonstrates our continued efforts to lead technology led disruptions by challenging the status quo and reimagining the global trade set-up.”

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