The Philippines’ department of finance says its TradeNet platform, which it claims will eliminate trade data discrepancies, will be fully operational in December.

The platform aims to help the government curb trade-based financial crime and capture more revenue.

Trade discrepancies

The department cites six reasons why discrepancies occur in trade data produced by different countries, some of which are central to a large proportion of trade-based financial crimes.

These include valuation differences and misinvoicing, both of which are widely used in trade-based money laundering. Other discrepancies are a result of smuggling, differing treatment of re-exports and transhipment, and incorrect attribution.

Trade data discrepancies occur when trade data reported by one country differ from those reported by its trading partners.

Online applications

When the TradeNet platform is introduced, commodity traders will apply for import and export permits online.

The platform will then connect to 66 trade regulatory agencies and 10 economic zones involved in approving import and export permits and other documents and approvals needed for international trade.

Regional network

TradeNet will also seek to correlate the Philippines’ data with matching data in other countries, thus serving as the country’s National Single Window, which will connect to the Asean Single Window (ASW), a regional initiative to speed up cargo clearance and promote economic integration.

The ASW will enable the electronic exchange of border documents among the Asean’s 10 member-states.