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DBS Bank collaborates with Maptrasco to Complete First India-Singapore eBL Transaction

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DBS partners with Maptrasco to complete the first eBL transaction between India and SingaporeDBS Bank Ltd (formerly known as Development Bank of Singapore Limited) in collaboration with Maptrasco (Khaitan International Private Limited – KIPL), a Singapore-based commodities trader, has completed the first “live” transaction of electronic Bills of Lading (eBL) for shipments between Singapore and India.

  • The transaction was implemented under the TradeTrust framework, an initiative by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and supported by Enterprise Singapore.
  • This was announced by Gan Kim Yong Minister for Trade and Industry of Singapore during the G20 Trade and Investment Ministerial Meeting in Jaipur, Rajasthan.


i.This project was implemented in close partnership between government agencies (Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI), Singapore), the National Institute for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog (India), Enterprise Singapore, and IMDA (Singapore).

ii.Industry partners  of the project includes DBS (Singapore), ICICI Bank (India), Maptrasco (Singapore), Jindal Stainless (India), and A.P. Moller-Maersk (APMM), Singapore.

TradeTrust Framework:

TradeTrust aims to streamline the process of document handling, reduce the reliance on physical paperwork, and enhance transparency and security in cross-border transactions.

i.The framework can be used for the transmission of any digital trade document including Certificates of Origin, Preferential Certificates, and transfer of Electronic Transferrable Records (ETRs) like eBLs.

ii.TradeTrust meets United Nations Commission On International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model Law on Electronic Transferable Records (MLETR) requirements. Incorporated into Singapore legislation in 2021.

iii.It utilises blockchain-powered technology to ensure the singularity and provenance of transactions, enhancing trust, security, and accuracy.

Details of First Shipment Using TradeTrust Framework:

i.Maptrasco shipped a container of scrap metal from Miami, Florida, the United States of America (USA) to Gujarat, India.

ii.Maersk issued an eBL using the TradeTrust portal, a reference implementation of the TradeTrust framework, to Maptrasco.

iii.Jindal Stainless applied for a Letter of Credit (L/C) from ICICI Bank as the Issuing Bank of the LC.Jindal Stainless is the first Indian company in a partnership between India and Singapore.

iv.Maptrasco utilised DBS as the Presenting Bank and transferred the title ownership of the eBL via the TradeTrust portal.

v.DBS checks and confirms the supporting documents as per the terms of the L/C, including the TradeTrust eBL. DBS uses the Singapore Trade Data Exchange (SGTraDex) platform to transfer the title ownership of the eBL to ICICI Bank.

vi.ICICI Bank receives the eBL and uses its own advanced platform, TradeChain, powered by EdgeVerve which is TradeTrust-enabled by GUUD to transfer the title ownership of the eBL to Jindal Stainless.

vii.Jindal Stainless as ICICI Bank’s customer, utilises the TradeChain platform to Surrender the eBL to Maersk and complete the shipment.

viii.Maersk then issues an electronic Delivery Order (DO) for Jindal Stainless to collect the cargo at the port of discharge.

Bills of Lading:

i.Bills of Lading(BL/BoL) are essential documents in shipping and logistics and serve as legal proof of ownership for goods during transit, as well as receipt of goods.

  •  A bill of lading is issued by the carrier (typically a shipping company or a freight forwarder) to the shipper (exporter) as a confirmation that the goods have been received and will be transported to their destination.

ii.However, only about 1.2% of bills of lading globally are issued electronically due to limitations in platforms that are not interoperable or use variations in rulebooks and standards, which makes scalability challenging.

iii.eBLs are expected to improve the speed, efficiency, and accuracy of information required for trade financing.

Key Points:

  • The project supports MLETR and aims to drive cross-border document and title exchanges.
  • The successful transaction paves the way for more efficient, interoperable digital bills of lading, and is a key milestone in the digital transformation of trade financing.
  • The project demonstrates the real-world applicability of the Group of 20 (G20) HighLevel Principles on Digitalisation of Trade Documents, particularly Interoperability, Scalability, Data Privacy, and Voluntary Sharing of Data.

Recent related news:

DBS Bank India launched an investment solution ‘digiPortfolio’ on its digibank platform, to create a set of investment options curated by Morningstar that match the risk preferences of different investors.

About DBS Bank Ltd:
Chief Executive Officer– Piyush Gupta
Headquarters– Marina Bay Financial Centre, Singapore
Established in– 1968
Tagline – Live more, Bank less