A coalition including DBS, Ocean Network Express (ONE), TFG Marine and Ascenz have successfully completed Singapore’s first live bunker delivery financing pilot transaction, as part of a drive to digitalise the country’s maritime sector.
The project, supported by the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), was completed by using an electronic bunker delivery note (BDN).
Banks currently rely on physical copies of the BDN and other supporting documents to avail bunker financing to clients, which DBS describes as a “cumbersome process” that can take up to a week to complete.
The newly digitalised process demonstrated that in future clients will be able to obtain financing for their underlying trade in under two hours, enabling them to obtain working capital faster and better manage their cashflows.
Sriram Muthukrishnan, Group Head of Trade Product Management, DBS, said, “Trust and transparency are the keys to Singapore’s continued leadership in trade and trade finance.
“The digitalisation of bunker delivery notes is one of many pivotal steps necessary to transition Singapore’s bunkering sector into the digital era and to ensure our port and shipping industry is future-ready.
“The objective is to co-create an end-to-end digital workflow that enhances efficiency and transparency for bunker trades, while building trust with banks and shipowners which are fundamental to the long-term growth and development of Singapore’s bunker ecosystem.”
Kenneth Lim, Assistant Chief Executive (Industry) of MPA, said, “MPA has been accelerating the maritime industry’s digital transformation efforts, and these include digitalisation of the bunkering sector, a vital part of our hub port service offering.
“The adoption of digital documentations will help stakeholders across the value chain move towards more efficient and transparent operations that are aided by data-driven decision making.
“We welcome more of such private-public collaborations facilitated by our regulatory sandbox, that will help Singapore remain the world’s leading bunkering port.”