Dubai and India introduces blockchain platform for traceable trade

31 Aug 2020 — The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has unveiled the Agriota E-Marketplace, a technology-driven agri-commodity trading and sourcing platform that uses blockchain to help bridge the gap between rural farmers in India and the UAE’s food industry. Specifically, the Agriota platform provides Indian farmers the opportunity to connect directly with food processing companies, traders and wholesalers in the UAE. The platform will offer cereals, pulses, oilseeds, fruits, vegetables, spices and condiments.

The launch focuses on how the Agriota platform will positively impact the UAE’s food security, economy and the way it aims to boost trade ties with India. Agriota was jointly developed with CropData Technology, an Indian company whose mission is to help marginal and small farmers.

“The UAE has a comprehensive plan in place to ensure food security and champion agribusiness trade facilitation, with the ultimate goal of positioning our nation as a world leading hub in innovation-driven food security. The launch of an innovative model like Agriota will inch the UAE closer to the top of the Global Food Security Index,” says Pavan Kapoor, Ambassador of India to the UAE.

In 2019, India exported more than US$38 billion of agricultural and processed food products, with one of their largest markets being the Middle East. Backed by Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), the marketplace is designed to enable farmers to bypass intermediaries, optimizing the supply chain and ensuring traceability. It provides this transparency through last-mile verification and extension infrastructure in a blockchain environment. Additionally, the introduction of a proprietary banking system with a multi-tier escrow structure, will guarantee the secure transaction of funds when using the platform.

In 2019, India exported more than US$38 billion of agricultural and processed food products, with one of its largest markets being the Middle East, DMCC reports. In July, it announced plans to replicate the successful business model behind its tea and coffee operation by building a new infrastructure and logistics center in the Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA) to attract, facilitate and promote the trade of cacao, pepper, chillies and spices – with the flexibly to expand to other agro-commodities including cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon, cumin, cloves, ginger, sesame seeds and cashew nuts.

This latest initiative builds on the comprehensive strategy of DMCC to attract innovative companies to Dubai and contribute to the nation’s wider economic diversification strategy. Earlier this year, DMCC signed an agreement with Crypto Valley – a Swiss Government-supported initiative that will bring the world’s leading blockchain and cryptographic technologies’ ecosystem to Dubai – and Innoway – one of China’s most successful global incubators and science, tech and education ecosystems.

Throughout the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, numerous weaknesses within global trade processes have come to the fore. Blockchain’s capacity to help address two primary industry challenges related to COVID-19 – the speed of trade and curbing the actual spread of disease – continue to boost its applicability.

Edited by Benjamin Ferrer

The article originally appeared in

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