Ocean carriers, terminals initiate blockchain group

CargoSmart CEO says the consortium provides an opportunity “to transform the shipping and logistics industry and elevate supply chain processes.”

Ocean carriers, terminals initiate blockchain group

CargoSmart CEO says the consortium provides an opportunity “to transform the shipping and logistics industry and elevate supply chain processes.”

Ocean carriers, terminals initiate blockchain group

CargoSmart CEO says the consortium provides an opportunity “to transform the shipping and logistics industry and elevate supply chain processes.”

 
   Nine ocean carriers and terminal operators on Tuesday signed a formal statement of intent for a memorandum of understanding to form a consortium to develop the Global Shipping Business Network (GSBN), an open digital platform based on distributed ledger technology.
   The participants are ocean carriers CMA CGM, COSCO SHIPPING Lines, Evergreen Marine, OOCL and Yang Ming; terminal operators DP World, Hutchison Ports, PSA International Pte Ltd and Shanghai International Port; and software solutions provider CargoSmart.
   The platform will be designed to establish a digital baseline that aims to connect all stakeholders, including carriers, terminal operators, customs agencies, shippers and logistics service providers to enable collaborative innovation and digital transformation in the supply chain.
   Companies are increasingly looking towards digital technologies to resolve siloed shipment management procedures and disruptive information gaps, according to Tuesday’s announcement, which said the consortium will offer a forum to address these challenges, explore cross-industry opportunities and empower future innovation and insights.
   The GSBN will enable the shipping industry to digitally transform and to prepare for innovative supply chains, the announcement said, adding that based on blockchain technology, the new platform will offer the following benefits:

   • A cooperative network enables members to develop applications and connect to other consortium networks to increase the speed of data integration and improve business performance.
   • Peer-to-peer networking allows data owners to share immutable records to other shipment stakeholders, enabling them to take quick action regarding critical milestones and to keep cargo moving throughout the supply chain.
   • An industry-wide common, trusted and expansive digital model provides a foundation for highly collaborative initiatives and market intelligence.
   CargoSmart said it initiated the formation of the blockchain consortium to revolutionize information exchange in the shipping industry. It said it is leveraging its deep shipping domain knowledge, big data analytics and expertise in developing software applications with artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain technologies to help network participants improve their shipping and logistics operations.
   The GSBN provides the foundation for new applications that can transform documentation flow for shipment management including dangerous goods documents, invoices and cargo release, CargoSmart said, adding that the first planned application will allow shippers to digitize and organize their dangerous goods documents and automatically connect with relevant parties to streamline the approval process. The application is scheduled to be available in December.

   “We are pleased to provide an industry-wide forum for collaboration based on blockchain technologies to transform the shipping and logistics industry and elevate supply chain processes,” said Steve Siu, chief executive officer of CargoSmart.
    Andy Tung, co-chief executive officer of Orient Overseas Container Line Ltd, said, “With the vision of a truly open blockchain platform for the industry, the GSBN will be key to the success of establishing a sustainable blockchain ecosystem for all stakeholders in the supply chain.”
   Ivor Chow, director of corporate finance and business development for Hutchison Ports, added, “As a founding member of the GSBN consortium, Hutchison Ports recognizes the potential of blockchain technology to be the key game changer with a far-reaching impact on global supply chains, bringing immense benefits to all aspects of operations and end-to-end visibility throughout the entire supply chain.
   “This collaboration brings together major industry players who strive to develop an open digital platform that will deliver efficiency gains and reduce costs of transactions,” Chow said.
The transpacific — sometimes stop, sometimes go — is currently the most unpredictable container trade. Carriers may be thanking President Trump right now, but they may come to rue the day if the trade conflict sees volumes disappear during crucial contract negotiations next year.
ZIM reported a net loss of $6.6 million in the third quarter compared to a net profit of $25.2 million in Q3 2017.
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