Cargo documentation blockchain pilot completed in China

COSCO Shipping Lines, Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG), Tesla and CargoSmart have completed a pilot of a new application for management of cargo release processes using blockchain technology.

The pilot saw COSCO conduct a real-time exchange of shipment data with the terminal operator using the blockchain as the single trusted source of verifiable cargo documentation. The application will now be further developed for use by participants in the Global Shipping Business Network (GSBN) consortium, once it is officially established.

The project was designed to minimise the steps involved in verification of consignees and shipping agents with ocean carriers, in order to speed up the release of sea waybills. Since the pilot, CargoSmart notes that the application has been improved further to also display laden gate out, appointment date and terminal release, to improve the visibility of cargoes.

“The pilot with SIPG and CargoSmart showcased significant efficiency gains, not only in the cargo release process but also for downstream supply chain planning by presenting a single source of truth for documentation for all involved parties,” said Wu Yu, General Manager of Business Process & System Division of COSCO.

“We look forward to more blockchain-based applications that can create value for customers and the industry alike.” 

As preparations continue for the formation of the GSBN, contingent upon securing required regulatory approvals, CargoSmart says it will conduct similar pilots with Xiamen Ocean Gate Container Terminal (XOCT) and other terminal operators such as those at the Port of Qingdao in China and the Port of Laem Chabang in Thailand.

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Rob O'Dwyer

Rob is Chief Network Officer and one of the founders of Smart Maritime Network. He also serves as Chairman of the Smart Maritime Council. Rob has worked in the maritime technology sector since 2005, managing editorial for a range of leading publications in the transport and logistics sector. Get in touch by email by clicking here, or on LinkedIn by clicking here.

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