Standard Chartered says it has completed a pilot letter of credit (L/C) transaction on the Voltron distributed ledger or blockchain platform.

The transaction involved a shipment of oil from Thailand to Singapore.

Significant time-saving

Parties to the transaction were Thailand's state-owned energy company PTT Group, PTT International Trading and PTT subsidiary IRPC.

By digitising the L/C process, the time taken to complete the transaction was reduced to under 12 hours from as much as five days for similar deals executed with paper-based documents.

This was Standard Chartered's first Voltron pilot transaction, although the financial services group has participated previously in several blockchain trade finance exercises.

Beyond L/C transactions

Standard Chartered's representative on the Voltron Steering Committee, Jordane Rollin, says applications beyond L/C processing are being planned for the blockchain platform.

"We are continuously getting feedback from our clients via pilots to enhance Voltron with new features," said Rollin.

"We have also started to ramp up on our contribution to this initiative to expand its offering beyond L/Cs and become a new industry standard for digitised traditional trade," he added.

Blockchain participations

In conjunction with TradeIX, Standard Chartered developed a bank guarantee system for Siemens. TradeIX is the developer of the Marco Polo network in which Standard Chartered participates. Both Voltron and Marco Polo operate over R3's Corda blockchain technology.

Standard Chartered was also a participant in a blockchain supply chain finance transaction on the Linklogis "WeQChain" blockchain.

This article represents the views of the author and not necessarily those of the ICC or Coastline Solutions.