BAFT and CGI Launch Trade Technology Survey at 2020 Virtual International Convention

by Blair Bernstein | Nov 13, 2020
BAFT and CGI recently conducted a survey of more than 200 BAFT members in an effort to better understand the current state of technological advancements in trade, and how the pandemic has accelerated their importance and need.

WASHINGTON – More than 70 percent of bank respondents reported a culture of increased innovation in trade finance during the last year, according to a new survey conducted by BAFT, the leading global financial services association for international transaction banking, and CGI, a multinational, independent IT and business consulting services firm. In fact, nearly 85 percent of survey participants reported increased digitization efforts at their financial institution in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.   

BAFT and CGI conducted its survey of more than 200 BAFT members in the summer of 2020 in an effort to better understand the current state of technological advancements in trade, and how the pandemic has accelerated their importance and need.

The survey found that banks have been driving new digitization efforts, forming consortia with financial and corporate partners, searching for compliance solutions, and re-examining existing processes to create efficient operations.

“Over the last 10 years of my career, we have been discussing automating trade finance processes,” said Stacey Facter, senior vice president, trade products, BAFT. “COVID-19 has underscored the need to move away from paper and seemingly expedited the transition. BAFT works to identify barriers to innovation and address them head on to continue driving the global trade finance industry to embrace digitalization.” 

Digitization initiatives are underpinned by technologies such as blockchain/DLT platforms, intelligent process automation, artificial intelligence, machine learning, natural language processing, and robotic process automation.

“The BAFT and CGI survey reveals that while banks continue to face legal, regulatory, and compliance challenges, the industry is making advances with newer technologies that support integrated platforms and provide seamless transactional workflows,” said Patrick DeVilbiss, director of consulting, trade and supply chain solutions, CGI.

The full survey and results will be presented at BAFT’s 2020 Virtual International Convention on Thursday, November 19 at 10:35 ET / 15:35 GMT during the ‘Trade Technology: Today’s Focuses, Tomorrow’s Promises’ session. This session will discuss the results of the survey and provide insight on the current state of technological advancement in trade featuring Normand D’Arcy, senior manager, international services, National Bank of Canada; Patrick DeVilbiss, director of consulting, trade and supply chain solutions, CGI; Stacey Facter, senior vice president, trade products, BAFT; and Marc Smith, CEO & founder, Conpend.

To view the survey’s results including respondents top technology investments over the next five years, top challenges in meeting shifting business needs, culture of innovation, fintech collaboration, and more, visit our Library of Documents under the Surveys section or click here.

About BAFT
BAFT is the leading international financial services association whose membership includes large global and regional banks, service providers, and fintech companies headquartered around the world. BAFT provides advocacy, thought leadership, education, and a global forum for its members in transaction banking, including international trade finance and payments. For nearly a century, BAFT has expanded markets, shaped policy, developed business solutions, and preserved the safety and soundness of the global financial system.

About CGI
Founded in 1976, CGI is among the largest independent IT and business consulting services firms in the world. With 76,000 consultants and other professionals across the globe, CGI delivers an end-to-end portfolio of capabilities, from strategic IT and business consulting to systems integration, managed IT and business process services and intellectual property solutions. CGI works with clients through a local relationship model complemented by a global delivery network that helps clients digitally transform their organizations and accelerate results. CGI Fiscal 2020 reported revenue is C$12.16 billion and CGI shares are listed on the TSX (GIB.A) and the NYSE (GIB). Learn more at cgi.com.

BAFT Media Contact:
Blair Bernstein
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