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Port Authority of Valencia joins IBM Maersk blockchain shipping solution “TradeLens”

Instalaciones Puerto de Valencia (APV)

Thu, 08 Nov 2018, 07:25 am UTC

The Port Authority of Valencia (APV) has announced that it has integrated into the TradeLens platform –a blockchain solution jointly developed by Maersk and IBM.

Officially announced in August, TradeLens has been designed to enhance the efficiency and security of global trade. It aims to digitize the shipping industry and facilitate secure and seamless sharing of information and trade documents among various stakeholders.

APV said that it has joined the initiative as “Early Adopter”, meaning that it will be involved in the platform’s early development.

“The TradeLens ecosystem currently includes more than 20 port operators and terminals around the world, representing approximately 234 seaports on five continents,” APV said (via online translation). “According to the data collected by the system itself, the use of TradeLens allows to reduce the transit time of a shipment by 40%, which represents an important economic saving.

“The platform has already processed 154 million data-sending events, including warehousing time, container shipping and customs documentation such as bill of lading and commercial invoices.”

The announcement follows a recent report from CoinDesk which revealed that the blockchain initiative is struggling to get more carriers on board. The key issue here seems to be that Maersk's rival shipping carriers are skeptical about joining TradeLens on a less than equal footing.

“The chiefs of two rival shipping carriers, CMA CGM (third largest by ship fleets and containers) and Hapag-Lloyd (No. 5), have publicly dismissed the Maersk-IBM blockchain solution as unusable,” the report said.

Earlier this year, Accenture announced that it has successfully tested blockchain technology in the shipping industry in collaboration with AB InBev, APL, Kuehne + Nagel, and a European customs organization. The trial involved assessing the technology’s potential in eliminating the need for physically printed shipping documents, saving hundreds of millions of dollars annually.

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