Business going fully digital could add $29 trillion boost to the economy over the next decade and provide export opportunities for up to 350 million new enterprises, according to a new analysis on the 'Future of Trade'. David Pollard reports.
The world of trade - perhaps turning a bit slower right now - but as for the future, something to grab with both hands. And one way of doing that, it's claimed: digitalising your business. SOUNDBITE (English) GAUTAM SASHITTAL, CEO, DMCC, SAYING: "It's about the cost of transactions ... according to the research we've done, by fully digitising all aspects of the business cycle, the cost of transactions could go down by as much as 85 per cent." Enabling more and more small businesses to go out and sell. Up to 350 million more businesses, we're told, could export goods and services through digital commerce. Adding $29 trillion to the digital economy in the next decade - or the first significant boost to worldwide trade since the financial crash. Big rewards then - as outlined in this week's launch of the first ever 'Future of Trade' report - compiled by the Dubai-based commodities hub DMCC in conjunction with the CEBR and the Futureagenda.org open forum. But also big risks - for those who miss out. SOUNDBITE (English) GAUTAM SASHITTAL, CEO, DMCC, SAYING: "The point is that you cannot get off the bandwagon - you cannot afford it not to be on the bandwagon, let's put it that way, because technology is moving at a rapid, rapid pace." Other themes in the report: the shift of influence to Asia, how to get talent - and regulation. And: the lack of funding available from commercial banks. But opportunities there too for crowd-funding, peer-to-lending and new payments systems. In an alternative finance market that could go from under two billion pounds annually to 12 billion by 2020 - in just the UK alone.