Asian exporters suffering from a lack of trade credit would have more chance of arranging finance if they switched to electronic trade processing systems, according to the World Trade Centers Association. President Guy Tozzoli said the lack of efficiency and accuracy in the traditional trade process - which uses paper transaction documents - had contributed to banks' reluctance to finance trading activities. The US-based association has launched a TradeCard system which automates the international trade process, including trade finance, pre-export finance, inspection services and on-line insurance. Mr Tozzoli said TradeCard was a PC-based network system linking importers, exporters, trade finance providers and other relevant parties with a common information platform. With TradeCard, each party involved can keep track of where the goods will go or are expected to go and when the importer should, through its bank or financier, pay the exporter using the system's Internet accessibility. Mr Tozzoli said TradeCard had support from internationally recognised financial institutions which provided lines of credit to importers and guaranteed payment to exporters on compliance of the terms of trade. The system has a central processor to perform third-party compliance checks of the terms of trade. When compliance has been met, payment instructions are set to the financial institutions who release the cash to the exporters. Mr Tozzoli said TradeCard removed the need for the expensive letters of credit as in the traditional trading process and gave the trade finance providers more comfort and certainty to support trade activities. He said Singapore and South Korea had expressed interest in the system.