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Executive Guide on eCommerce

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ExecGuide_eCommerce_Eng.pdf (application/pdf, 1.04 MB)
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ExecGuide_eCommerce_Fre.pdf (application/pdf, 1.04 MB)
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ExecGuide_eCommerce_Rus.pdf (application/pdf, 974.06 KB)

The electronic exchange of data for commercial transactions has taken several names: eTrade, eBusiness, eCommerce… These terms are often used interchangeably. However, the United Nations Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business, who has worked on the base semantics of data exchange for over three decades, has proposed some clarity in this area.

In this context, eCommerce is a commercial transaction between a buyer and seller which is initiated on an on-line platform. These two actors could be either economic operators (companies) or direct consumers. The on-line interaction is the eCommerce aspect. Computer-to-computer interaction would be considered eBusiness exchanges. These two terms are therefore not interchangeable, but complementary as the on-line purchase of a product will often trigger eBusiness data transactions.

For example, as a consumer, I purchase a table on an internet website. The actual purchase and most likely the payment as well are performed through internet website(s). Once the company where the table was purchased receives this order, they may need to send a series of messages to other actors on the supply chain such as a shipping instruction to the warehouse, a reservation of transport with a freight forwarder… and other actors on the supply chain may need to send messages to other actors such as detailed export/import declarations, as well as potentially other regulatory declarations. These subsequent messages, if electronic,
would be considered eBusiness as they would be computer-to-computer.