Interoperable and verifiable credentials for cross-border trade

13 September 2023


andres, benoit_, Crane, decentralgabe, doniv, Eric-Siow, hsano_, hsano__, KyleHuang, LaurensDebackere, phila, Sami, Sebastian, Sebastian Crane, Tony_England
Rachel Yager

Meeting minutes

<David_turner> present

take up item 1

Talk about overview of openattestation.

prevent fraud and cost

verification purpose

openattestation 4 key attributes

take up item 2

OpenAttestation is an open-source document endorsement and verification framework created by GovTech in 2018

<doniv> Is there a link to the slides that I can open locally?

At version 3.0, and on GitHub • More than 10M verification collectively globally in 2022

Presentation: W3C TPAC 2023 2308906.pdf

take up item 3

<doniv> Thanks for the slides!

The challenges of cross-border trade documentation and the benefits of digitalisation

Inefficient Fragmented Systems • Manual handling • Vulnerable to fraud

• Costly connections • No interoperability Cost of documentation is 20%* of cost of shipping This inefficiency is costly 20% *Maersk and IBM’s Paper Trail Research in 2014 ^McKinsey Study “The multi-billion-dollar paper jam: Unlocking trade by digitalizing documentation” in 2022 Shipping Cost

Existential Symptoms and Issues to Digitalisation

Human mindset prefer original hard copies.

Lack of Trust • Transactions between companies with limited touchpoints • Companies forced to adopt paper as the most interoperable medium but struggle with determining authenticity and source of documents

Digital Maturity Varies Across the Cross-Border Trade Value Chain • The entire ecosystem is at various stages of development • If one part of the chain is paper, all other documents revert to paper

Siloed Digital Ecosystems • Existing technology solutions and platforms are generally not interoperable • Fractured ecosystem. Parties forced to choose one or multiple systems

Legal Uncertainty of Digital Transferrable Documents • Until recently^, only paper Transferable Documents were legally valid under statute law • Therefore, transfers of title ownership via such documents could not be performed electronically

Presentation: W3C TPAC 2023 2308906.pdf

we are at slide 10

^Singapore’s 2021 amendment of its Electronic Transactions Act (ETA), one of the first few internationally, enables the creation and use of ETRs such as electronic Bills of Lading (eBLs), empowering practitioners to reap the benefits of digitalisation more easily.

Tradetrust’s 3 key functionalities: authenticity, source & title ownership for trade documents

TradeTrust is designed to provide industry the means to verify the authenticity and source of a document, as well as to create Electronic Transferable Records (ETRs) that are functionally equivalent^ to their paper versions (e.g. able to effect title transfers). • Uses Decentralised Identifiers (DID) and digital signatures to verify the source and authenticity of documents. • Uses Blockchain to create Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) to repre[CUT]

TradeTrust is a framework

Not a technology platform

Slide 12:

Take up item 5

TradeTrust is a framework that comprises globally-accepted standards that connect governments and businesses to a public blockchain to enable trusted interoperability of electronic trade documents across digital platforms AND it is offered as a digital utility.

4 Key Components of TradeTrust

Legal Harmonisation

Standards Development

Accreditation Framework

Software Components

A set of open-source software code that can easily integrate backend solutions to the TradeTrust network

Presentation: W3C TPAC 2023 2308906.pdf

Slide 13:

TradeTrust’s Key Design Principles

Public Blockchain

Data Off-Chain

Payload Agnostic



Follow Presentation: W3C TPAC 2023 2308906.pdf

slide 14: verifiable documents' interoperability

slide 15: Dealing with transferable documents (Bill of Lading as an example)

slide 16: Enabling transferable documents’ interoperability across different digital ecosystems

slide 17: Typical pilot use case: cross-border trade financing involving eBLs

little red thing is tradetrust and demonstrated decentralization

slide 18 - 20 pilots with industry partners and overseas governments



Handout for the session: OA_Handout.pdf


• Redactable eBL o From a supplier, eBL can be reused for downstream supplier to its’ buyer. • Renderer in this case is hosted by the original issuer. • QR code allows a simple way to take part in the digital trade.

slide 23:

W3C Verifiable Credentials Interoperability

Wrap Up

• Make OpenAttestation and TradeTrust successful • Participate in the W3C Verifiable Credentials Working Group • Website: https://www.openattestation.com/ • GitHub: https://github.com/Open-Attestation • Contact: openattestation_support@tech.gov.sg

Why NFT?

answer: no nft used

Phila - good work

Sami - does model support document updates?

GovTech answer: changes are issued as separate. Original is not changed. Verifiable document will need to reissue.

<Zakim> andres, you wanted to ask about did discovery and how trust is established

Andres - How do trust establish between the original document and the original materials/sources? are there legal contract?

Answer - openattestation uses DID methods.

<Zakim> Jay, you wanted to ask who will pay for gas for public blockchain.

question - public key?

who will pay for the fees of public key?

commercially not a straight forward. Some countries ban crytocurrency. Will using tradetrust get into trouble with local policy. Technical capability lacking.

Answer: some use EBL to mask the crypto and wallet.

Minutes manually created (not a transcript), formatted by scribe.perl version 221 (Fri Jul 21 14:01:30 2023 UTC).


Maybe present: answer, Presentation

All speakers: answer, Presentation

Active on IRC: andres, benoit_, David_turner, decentralgabe, doniv, Eric-Siow, hsano_, hsano__, Jay, KyleHuang, labrax, LaurensDebackere, phila, rachely, Sami, tidoust, Tony_England