INTERNATIONAL Container Terminal Services, Inc (ICTSI), an international terminal operator operating in 19 countries, has signed on to connect its 31 terminals to the TradeLens platform.
Connecting to Tradelens, a blockchain platform jointly developed by IBM and Maersk, allows all ICTSI terminals permissioned access to accurate information on cargo movements well in advance of vessel arrivals. "Tracking of containers through the networked exchange of data enables efficient asset planning for all entities involved utilising data in near real time to create end-to-end data visibility," the terminal operator said in a news release.
"We are now testing the system and transferring information about loading and discharge of cargo, berthing of vessels to the blockchain platform. After complete integration of the system, we will be able to optimise work with regulatory authorities, improve our terminals' visibility to what is coming to them as well as receive updates from the sea carriers online," says Brian Hibbert, ICTSI vice president and CIO.
The TradeLens ecosystem, which was launched in 2018, now includes more than 175 organisations - extending to more than 10 ocean carriers and encompassing data from more than 600 ports and terminals. Already, it has tracked 30 million container shipments, 1.5 billion events and roughly 13 million published documents.
Thomas Sproat, TradeLens director of network development, commented: "The broadening geographic scope of the platform is bolstered by the addition of ICTSI and provides new opportunities for TradeLens participants as the ecosystem continues to expand rapidly. We are excited to welcome ICTSI and eagerly await the creation of new ways of working for shippers and consignees that indirectly utilise their services."
TradeLens not only enables carriers and cargo owners to exchange transactional information in real time, it also sends associated trade documents to permissioned parties. Blockchain technology reduces the processing time of traditional paper documents, making it faster and easier to issue bills of lading for cargo, sanitary certificates, invoices for payment and other types of documentation.
"For terminals, this is especially important when considering hazardous cargo and potential efficiency gains in the terminal release and customs release processes," ICTSI said.