SAP has unveiled a new version of its Global Trade Services software, which company officials say can better help customers navigate through the tangle of international trading laws and procedures.
Initially released in 2002, the GTS application is used by some 250 companies to automate the processes involved in cross-border transactions. The latest version, GTS 7.0, is built on top of SAP’s NetWeaver middleware technology, says Neetin Datar, director of solutions marketing at SAP’s global risk compliance unit.
One customer, Applied Biosystems Group, is already considering an upgrade to the new application.
Leighton Yates, senior manager for global trade compliance at Applied Biosystems, says he is interested in Version 7.0 because it supports multiple languages and offers updated reporting capabilities. The company is now using an earlier version of the application.
Yates also says the latest version of GTS provides a trade preferences module that can automate the process of complying with applicable regional trade agreements — a feature that could help Applied Biosystems eliminate redundant processes and save it as much as US$1 million (NZ$1.6 million).
New features in GTS 7.0 also include the ability to automatically create letters of credit, which are commonly used in Europe and Asia, Datar says.
For example, he says that about 70% of all transactions based on letters of credit are rejected because of errors. “It’s a huge area of pain for our customers, especially those with outsourced manufacturing who are dealing with customers on a global basis,” he says.
Proper standardisation of the processes can boost efficiency and cut costs for users, he says.
Version 7.0 automates customs warehousing processes, which will help companies to defer or eliminate duty payments, SAP says.
In addition, GTS 7.0 supports adherence to mandatory Automated Export System filing requirements, the company says.