TradeLens is a digital alliance among container shipping lines started by the teaming up of Maersk and IBM to offer customers digital freight solutions..
Touted as an open and neutral industry platform underpinned by Blockchain technology, Tradelens is now supported by major industry players such as Maersk, Zim Lines, PIL, CMA CGM, MSC, Hapag Lloyd and ONE..
This platform received a major boost on the 23rd of December 2019 when The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) published “The TradeLens Agreement”..
From the time the collaboration between Maersk Line and IBM was announced in January 2018 and the creation of TradeLens in August 2018, the blockchain-enabled shipping solution designed to promote more efficient and secure global trade had many naysayers with predictions of the platform doomed to fail..
Because this platform was initiated and created by Maersk Line, the world’s largest container shipping line, along with IBM there were concerns by other carriers about joining the platform as there was no equal footing for them..
Fast forward 11 months to 2nd July 2019, TradeLens seems to have overcome the initial jitters, fears and concerns and now has the support of Maersk Line, Zim Lines, PIL, CMA CGM, MSC, Hapag Lloyd and ONE..
Blockchain seems to have become a prolific “enabler” of businesses, particularly in the shipping and freight and trade industry..
Whether in its use by Banks and Shippers to create Trade Finance documents; or creating and transmitting smart bills of lading; or setting up a blockchain-based marketplace app for trading in coffee; or making documentation easy for ports; or ensuring prompt delivery of mandarins for the Chinese New Year; Blockchain is making its presence felt quite rapidly in our industry..
Many shipping lines, ports, financial institutions and other private entities are using Blockchain and testing it in many different ways through many pilot projects..
Saudi Customs became the latest entity to successfully test drive its first shipment powered the blockchain technology..
Ports and port authorities have also got in on the Blockchain action with the port of Valencia joining the TradeLens project, the technological solution developed by IBM and Maersk to start applying blockchain technology in the global supply chain and the port of Marseille Fos piloting a blockchain based project for supply chain logistics and intermodal freight movement on the Mediterranean-Rhône-Saône axis (MeRS) transport corridor..
The TradeLens project has been further strengthened by the announcement from ZIM Integrated Shipping that it has signed on as a member of TradeLens..