Many have heralded the prowess of Blockchain, the “immutable” hero of technology in the shipping, freight and logistics space..
Blockchain has already been
- successfully used by Banks and Shippers to create Trade Finance documents ;
- creative enough to get a Tech company and the World’s largest container line to invest in it ;
- successfully used by companies to create and transmit smart bills of lading with it ;
Ports and port authorities have also got in on the Blockchain action with the port of Valencia, recently joining the TradeLens project, the technological solution developed by IBM and Maersk to start applying blockchain technology in the global supply chain..
Now it is the turn of the port of Marseille Fos, the largest seaport in France, 5th largest in Europe and 41st in the world..
The port of Marseille Fos will be piloting a blockchain based project for supply chain logistics and intermodal freight movement on the Mediterranean-Rhône-Saône axis (MeRS) transport corridor..
This project will test the security of the digital transport chain and study how to improve the fluidity, safety and competitiveness of the movement of goods on the Rhône / Saône axis.. As per Voies navigables de France (VNF), in 2014, the Rhône / Saône waterways were used to ship in excess of 5.6 million tons and will be a fitting corridor for this project..
The prototype of this blockchain solution is expected to be launched in June 2019 and will initially focus on a few different types of documents but is expected to eventually cover the entire supply chain process..
This will be made possible through the building of a chain of virtual and secure documents, which will allow sharing of data between interested parties, using certified blockchain technology..
The project is reported to have the financial backing of the Bank of the Territories (Caisse des Dépôts), Voies navigables de France (VNF), the Compagnie National Rhone (CNR) and the Grand Port Maritime of Marseille (GPMM)..
Through this project, the port of Marseille Fos expects better control and visibility on all the points of the supply chain and if successful, would be applicable to other ports..
The pilot will be operated by three companies specializing in the fields logistics, digital solutions for the transport chain and blockchain technology:
- Marseille Gyptis International (MGI), software editor specializing in the tracking of goods in seaports and airports, brings knowledge about port collaboration;
- BuyCo, a collaborative platform for importers and exporters, simplifies processes container transport operations; and
- KeeeX, a digital security export
The Port of Marseille Fos is becoming a maritime digital gateway and recently announced that the first phase of the subsea cable landing infrastructure will be delivered by 3rd Quarter of 2019..
This infrastructure is expected to provide a reliable and convenient plug & play interface for cables from all over the world..
The port of Marseille Fos said this investment marks a new step in the development of the #frenchsmartportinmed, a port always at the forefront of innovation to create value for the region in a digitized world..
At the 30th International Conference of the IAPH (International Association of Ports and Harbors), held in Indonesia, in 2017, MGI and the Port of Marseille Fos received the “Smart Port 2.0” award (the highest distinction in the IT category) for their complementary and interoperable information systems: Neptune Port and Ci5..