The Trade Finance Registry (TFR) is a national banking industry utility designed to enhance the transparency and integrity of trade finance transactions across banks in Singapore. The TFR will serve as a central utility for all trade finance transactions that are financed by banks in Singapore.

ABS is the owner of the TFR with Banking Computer Services Private Limited (BCS), a subsidiary of NETS group, as the TFR Operator.

The financial industry and MAS are fully supportive of this initiative. Currently, 40 banks have indicated that they will join the TFR.

Background to TFR

TFR was conceived to address informational asymmetry to better detect and mitigate duplicate financing, particularly in commodity trade, and especially with regard to the detection and mitigation of trade fraud.

With a common data exchange network/utility for trade finance among the banks in Singapore, FI will now be better equipped to identify transactions that were being financed simultaneously by multiple FIs and mitigate trade fraud.

Key objectives

The key objectives of TFR are to improve transparency of transactions and bridge the information asymmetry among banks to:

  • detect multiple financing and

  • validate genuineness of trade; by leveraging technology using APIs to connect to SGTraDex to request information from source e.g., shipping companies on Bills of Lading issuances

Benefits to the financial industry

With the TFR, banks will have greater confidence in financing trade transactions as they will be assured that these transactions can be checked to prevent multiple financing. In future, the TFR’s effectiveness will be further enhanced when it is connected to similar systems in other foreign jurisdictions, enabling the TFR to capture offshore transactions made outside of Singapore.