Blockchain-enabled supply chain data platform Global Shipping Business Network (GSBN) has announced that an electronic bill of lading (eBL) application built using its API has now been granted approval by the International Group of P&I Clubs.
Technology developer IQAX is the first to develop an eBL application using the API, building on the blockchain platform to provide a secure end-to-end system for the creation, processing and exchange of this digital documentation.
“We are witnessing a once-in-a-lifetime digital leap in the shipping sector. Yet the nature of global trade means the size of the challenge is significant and complex,” said Bertrand Chen, CEO at GSBN.
“Our strategy is to empower application builders like IQAX through APIs on our platform, to develop solutions that address different segments and needs of this sizeable challenge. The launch of the eBL application is also a good example of connecting logistics with banks as part of the trade finance process, and we can soon expect to see more collaboration in this area.”
To further encourage interoperability between systems, GSBN says it has also joined the Technical Committee of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO/TC 154) working group to help develop an international standard for Data Interchange Processes of Blockchain-based Negotiable Maritime Bills of Lading related to eCommerce platforms.
The new ISO TC 154 aims to standardise the way blockchain-based eBLs integrate within eCommerce, including eBL transfers among trade parties and connectivity with banks. The standard will be supported by GSBN’s APIs as well as IQAX’s application.
“We’re constantly driving to solve real-world challenges in the logistics and shipping sector through technology. The eBL application is a major milestone in addressing a critical challenge for many participants in the supply chain. Through GSBN’s trusted network, we hope we can empower even more companies to collaborate and enable frictionless global trade,” said Romney Wong, CEO at IQAX.
GSBN’s list of shareholders is comprised of global carriers and terminal operators, including COSCO Shipping Lines, COSCO Shipping Ports, Hapag-Lloyd, Hutchison Ports, OOCL, SPG Qingdao Port, PSA International and Shanghai International Port Group.