The largest foreign lender by assets Citi today launched a paperless payment solutions for importers, promising to reduce transaction time. At present, companies submit multiple documents for crossborder payments and it takes one full day to process the same which will come down to 3 hours with this offering, Citi’s treasury and trade solutions head Debopama Sen told reporters.
Claiming Citi is the first to offer such solutions in the country, Sen said its 3,000 customers will be able to share import payment information with the bank by quoting RBI’s import data payment and monitoring system number. Citi targets to get in all its 3,000 clients who are into exim trade to avail of this solution, Sen said, adding Japanese electronics major Sony has already done it.
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She said the bank’s treasury and trade solutions business will maintain its 8-10 per cent growth in 2017 as well and expects up to 10 per cent of incremental volumes to be processed through the new system. The American lender, which handles 6.6 per cent of the country’s external trade flows, alone handles 5 million pieces of paper documents annually that can potentially be stopped using the new system, she said, adding the overall trade consumes 15 crore documents.
An improvement in the turnaround time for payments will also help improve the country’s ranking in the ease of doing business, she claimed. Sen said the country is ranked 143rd on crossborder trade which has a 10 per cent weighting in the overall ease of doing business, where it is ranked a low 130th.