Southeast Asia’s largest shipper Pacific International Lines (PIL) announced a partnership with U.S. tech giant IBM to use blockchain for electronic Bill Of Lading. PIL, which operates in over 500 locations all over the world, announced on Thursday the initiative to digitize this crucial shipping document.
The IBM-PIL collaboration aims to use blockchain technology to directly exchange documents and crucial data over a decentralized network. The initiative will improve the efficiency and security of the documents involved in the management of supply chain.
Bill of Lading plays a key role in international trade, as it is a physical document that holds vital commercial and legal data. Banks rely on this document to provide financial support for trade. The document includes receipt and title of goods along with evidence of contract of carriage.
The document is susceptible to fraudsters as it is usually mailed to different parties. This could lead to the document being mishandled or disappearing altogether. These factors, along with the document handling costs, result in a highly inefficient supply chain.
The primary purpose of this tie-up is to remove the hard copy concept and replicate the document online with the help of IBM’s blockchain technology.
”The use of blockchain technology to allow for the direct exchange of documents and information via the decentralised network to boost transparency, eliminate disputes forgeries and unnecessary risks will be key for this industry to progress,” said Lisa Teo, PIL’s executive director.
The partnership has plans in place to extend the electronic document to shadow a shipment from start to finish in real time.
Image via Shutterstock
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