The US Chambers of Commerce is abandoning the last bastion of paper, adopting an Australian innovation that promises to eliminate USD 500 million spent on processing Certificates of Origin.
The eCert solution from South Australian company eCertify allows chambers to offer their members Electronic Certificates of Origin to validate the goods they are exporting, a process in its current form described as “cumbersome at best” by industry leaders.
Following a successful launch at the American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) 2009 Convention in Raleigh, NC, the ACCE will deploy eCert using the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model to provide immediate cost and time savings.
“Exporting has been a paper-intensive area with many complex processes that need to be signed, sealed and delivered by exporters, freight forwarders and chambers,” says eCertify founder and managing director Carman Rossi. “On top of that, exports are down 20% overall* and exporters need to reduce the cost and time-to-market wherever they can to get product to their importers.
“eCert is our answer to automating this last step in the international global supply chain. It’s a lean, green solution that reduces paper usage, costs and time.”
Mr Rossi said the market need for eCert was validated when he was invited to speak at the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) 6th World Chambers Congress in Kuala Lumpur in July 2009.
“We were told we were the world leaders in this area and invited to present to the ACCE in Raleigh,” he said. “Our research shows that once deployed, eCert can save the export community $500 million a year in the US alone.”
Announcing the agreement, ACCE president Mick Fleming described eCert as “A natural!”
“…eCert takes a service that chambers are already performing and makes it better, easier and more profitable,“ Mr Fleming said.
“The program we’re introducing … automates and improves the processing of Certificates of Origin….COOs can now be handled with less hassle and less chance for error.”
*The GFC has reduced exports from the USA, according to the US Department of Commerce: “Through the end of the first half 2009 (January – June) U.S. goods and services exports totalled $745.9 billion, a 19.3 per cent decline from the $924.4 billion exported through the same period of 2008. Comparatively, U.S. goods and service imports fell faster than exports, with imports declining 28.8 percent through the first half of 2009 (when compared to the year earlier period).”