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Major Ocean Carriers’ Latest Blockchain Move May Give the Technology More Credibility

The digitalization of ocean shipping got a boost on Tuesday when global container carriers CMA CGM and MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company said they will join TradeLens, a blockchain-enabled digital shipping platform jointly developed by A.P. Moller – Maersk and IBM.

With CMA CGM, MSC, Maersk and other carriers committed to the platform, data for nearly half of the world’s ocean container cargo will now be available on TradeLens. The addition of CMA CGM and MSC will provide momentum to TradeLens’ vision of greater trust, transparency and collaboration across supply chains to help promote global trade.

CMA CGM and MSC will operate a blockchain node, participate in consensus to validate transactions, host data and assume the critical role of acting as trust anchors, or validators, for the network. CMA CGM and MSC will be on the TradeLens Advisory Board, which will include members across the supply chain to advise on standards for neutrality and openness.

“Digitization is a cornerstone of the CMA CGM Group’s strategy to provide an end-to-end offer tailored to our customers’ needs,” Rajesh Krishnamurthy, executive vice president of IT & Transformations at CMA CGM Group, said. “We believe that TradeLens, with its commitment to open standards and open governance, is a key platform to help usher in this digital transformation. TradeLens’ network is already showing that participants from across the supply chain ecosystem can derive significant value.”

TradeLens enables participants to connect, share information and collaborate across the shipping supply chain. Members gain a comprehensive view of their data and can digitally collaborate as cargo makes its way around global ports.

“The TradeLens platform has enormous potential to spur the industry to digitize the supply chain and build collaboration around common standards,” said André Simha, chief digital and information officer at MSC.

With more than 100 participants on the platform today, TradeLens is already processing over 10 million discrete shipping events and thousands of documents each week, providing shippers, carriers, freight forwarders, customs officials, port authorities, inland transportation providers and others a common view of transactions.