The blockchain platform can register payments, administrative management and travel incidents in real time
In compliance with the announcement that the Korean subsidiary Samsung SDS and the Dutch bank ABN Amro made last October, these two companies celebrated the shipment of a container from Korea to the Netherlands, using exclusively an interoperable blockchain platform.
The shipment is a Proof of Concept (PoC) developed by ABN Amro, Samsung SDS and the Port of Rotterdam, which is the largest in Europe and is located in the city of Rotterdam, in the Netherlands.
The official announcement details that the blockchain platform “DELIVER” allowed tracing the container and paying the shipment instantly. In this way, the shipment is conducted without papers.
Rotterdam is a city that has historically been characterized by its high volume of maritime traffic and it is currently the largest and busiest port in Europe. According to the Financial Director of the port of Rotterdam, Paul Smits, the traditional process of maritime transport is usually heavy and inefficient when using papers.
“Currently payments, administration and the physical transportation of containers still take place through separate circuits. This results in inefficiency, as many parties are involved and everything is organized with paper documentation. For instance, an average 28 parties are involved in container transport from China to Rotterdam”, he said.
According to official information, DELIVER is an interoperable platform that supports the Ethereum and Hyperledger applications. This integration of multiple blockchains actually provides a series of functional benefits, including notarization of documents, prevention of double payments and the transfer of assets quickly and safely.
“The Customs Clearance Blockchain System at the Korea Customs Service is based on Hyperledger, while Rotterdam Port in the Netherlands is using the Ethereum Platform. We started the Deliver project to connect different platforms”, Han Seung-yeop, manager at Samsung SDS reportedly commented.
The idea is to synchronize the key data of a commercial exchange in one place, besides saving the manual processes of validation and the paperwork they imply. In this way, the blockchain platform can register payments, administrative management and travel incidents in real time.
Once the proof-of-concept shipment is ready, the organizations in charge of the project signed an agreement to launch multiple pilot projects based on the shipping blockchain platform, as the Port of Rotterdam announcement.
A Global Platform
The goal of these three companies for the near future would be to provide a global and independent platform for shipping. Those are the changes that blockchain technology could contribute so far.
Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) not only will save time, it will also avoid the use of paper and thus save millions of euros in the long term, thanks to the efficiency and transparency blockchain technology provides to the management of supply chains.
Beverage and food companies such as Nestlé are using blockchain to trace their production, whilst in countries such as Spain, there are projects to automate toll systems and track an item in the production and distribution chains to its final destination. Now, it is time to trace not only products, but also important shipments.
By María Rodríguez