The World Trade Organization (WTO) released a report on the impact of blockchain technology on international trade on November 27. According to the study, by 2030, the global economic value of the blockchain may reach nearly $3 trillion.
“Blockchain and International Trade: Opportunities, Challenges and Impacts of International Trade Cooperation” analyzes the application of blockchain and the challenges that must be considered before the deployment of technologies. The study considered the impact of the technology on trade finance, customs clearance, logistics and transportation.
The study estimates that blockchain has the potential to significantly reduce trade costs by increasing transparency and facilitating process automation (including financial intermediation, exchange rate costs, coordination, and other aspects). The report states: “The removal of barriers due to blockchain may lead to more than $1 trillion in new trade in the next decade.”
Blockchain is expected to help manage intellectual property in multiple jurisdictions by increasing transparency and efficiency, and strengthen government procurement processes, including combating fraud and managing public contracts.
The blockchain is said to improve the supply chain, allowing tracking of goods and proving their authenticity. In addition, the technology opens up new opportunities for micro, small and medium-sized companies.
Instead, the study warns of the challenges that must be addressed before deploying the blockchain and its impact on international trade. The researchers pointed out that in addition to energy consumption and safety issues, the scalability of the blockchain is limited due to the predetermined block size.
Although “blockchains are highly resilient compared to traditional databases because of their decentralized and distributed nature and the use of encryption, they are not completely immune to traditional security challenges,” the study suggests.