Maritime Singapore moving ahead with blockchain technology

To strengthen the resilience of international supply chains and boost economic recovery, the World Economic Forum has released the Blockchain Deployment Toolkit and Singapore is adopting the global best practices to help its maritime industry.  Lee Kok Leong, executive editor, Maritime Fairtrade, reports   

The pressure created by the COVID-19 outbreak on global trade systems highlights an urgent need for global cooperation to maintain and strengthen the resilience of international supply chains.  Resilience of supply chains depends on transparency and integrity, which can be improved through the responsible deployment of blockchain technology, according to the World Economic Forum.

The current pandemic underscores the need for businesses and governments to improve the integrity and provenance of pharmaceutical products and medical supplies, as well as food, goods and industrial and consumer products.  To respond to this challenge, the World Economic Forum launches a comprehensive toolkit to accelerate the use of responsible blockchain by industry leaders.

Quah Ley Hoon, Chief Executive, Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, said: “We see an acceleration of digitalization in Maritime Singapore, which has improved productivity and efficiency of the sector. Blockchain has tremendous potential applicability in areas such as bills of lading, cargo-tracking and trade financing. 

“Maritime Singapore has piloted blockchain technology in electronic bills of lading used by shippers and shipping lines, and the ship registration process between class societies and ship owners. The Singapore Government will continue work with industry partners to push forward on this front. The Blockchain Deployment toolkit’s global best practices will be helpful for the Maritime Digitalization Playbook that we are launching soon for our shipping companies.” 

Nadia Hewett, Blockchain and Digital Currency Project Lead, World Economic Forum, said: “The blockchain deployment toolkit is essential for designing solutions that work for a multitude of actors, including smaller players who may not have access to the resources required to unlock the value of blockchain technology.

“For this reason, the toolkit can level the playing field for small and medium-sized enterprises. There are many lessons to learn from the current pandemic and this toolkit is a starting point for improving long-term pandemic preparedness and accelerating an economic recovery led by public-private cooperation.” 

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