The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) say they will be co-operating to develop blockchain-based trade finance platforms to combat trade fraud.

The collaboration between the HKMA and MAS aims to create synergies in the development of financial services technologies and builds on Singapore and Hong Kong’s already extensive financial and trade linkages.

Collaborative strategies

The collaboration is a continuation of the HKMA’s blockchain strategy of co-operation established in 2016 when the authority started work with banks including HSBC and Standard Chartered.

It is also an extension of the efforts of MAS, which is developing Project Ubin, a collaborative project with the industry to explore the use of blockchain for clearing and settlement of payments and securities.

Joint statement

The two authorities have issued a joint statement indicating that the collaborative effort is part of a larger plan to couple together the two regions’ financial technology and blockchain projects.

The two authorities have committed to working on a project to establish trade finance cross-border infrastructure based on blockchain or distributed ledger technology, as their first collaborative initiative. They say this will facilitate cross-border trade and financing.

To facilitate financial innovation in Hong Kong and Singapore, HKMA and MAS say they will also collaborate on a number of initiatives, including joint innovation projects, referrals of innovative businesses, information sharing and exchanges of expertise.