Six years ago, we realised that there was a demonstrable gap in the training of trade finance. We developed our on-line offering because we saw the need and necessity for an affordable training approach within the trade finance market.
Then, four years ago, we highlighted an extract from the ICC Trade Finance Survey of that year:
"Of more concern is the response that over 20% of respondents are seeing a reduction in the global pool of senior technical specialists in trade operations as the greatest challenge. This has long been recognised as a problem that would arise. A greater focus by banks on this area is essential in order to ensure that they can, in the future, support their clients in the trade arena."
As we have frequently pointed out, the trading of goods and the provision of services has always been a key basis and tenet for human existence. And in the fast evolving world in which we live, it is critical that the necessary skills are applied: training is critical. Training ensures less supervision and improved productivity, thereby leading to efficiency and effectiveness.
Trade practitioners need to fully understand the environment in which they work and be aware of the pitfalls they may encounter. Being in a position to mitigate risk is a key foundation to success.
This was fully reflected in the conclusions made by the ICC Banking Commission at its meeting in Jakarta in April 2017 in which it recommended three work-streams to be taken forward:
As we have repeatedly stated, we will continue to concentrate our efforts in providing affordable training in support of trade practitioners on all sides, bank, logistics, and corporate.
Our mission continues as it always was - to enliven, enrich and engage the trade finance community.