Together with geopolitics and technology, trade finance is one of the pillars that will significantly shape the future of international commerce in the following years. To grasp the economic dimension of the phenomenon, just consider that, according to a recent study, the global trade finance gap – i.e., the difference between requests and approvals for financing to support imports and exports – widened to US 1.7 trillion dollars.

As trade and supply chains grow more complex – involving more intermediaries, service providers, regulatory clearances, and certifications – companies, especially micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), face greater challenges in financing operations. The shortfall in funding prevents job creation and economic growth, which are essential for the world economy to recover from a pandemic. Meanwhile, the increasing trade digitalization is an opportunity for businesses, which will be expected to embrace the change and have a fundamental appreciation of the various components required to digitalise also the trade financing.

This session will focus on future developments in trade finance, including how financial instruments and legal frameworks will (and should) inevitably change in the following years.