Article By Samburaj Das
Samsung SDS, the IT subsidiary of Korean giant Samsung, is collaborating with Dutch ‘big three’ bank ABN AMRO for a logistics blockchain pilot tracking the shipment of a container from Korea to the Netherlands.
In an announcement on Monday, Samsung SDS revealed details of a new partnership with the Netherlands bank for a joint blockchain pilot to track the multi-modal transport of a container from a factory in Korea to the Netherlands through the Port of Rotterdam, Europe’s largest shipping port by freight volume.
Specifically, the pilot will involve the linking of Nexledger, Samsung’s enterprise blockchain, and ABN AMRO’s Corda platform, developed by New York-based industry firm R3.
ABN AMRO claims the ‘special’ project brings two different blockchains together ‘for the first time in the rather short history of this technology’, adding ‘this takes place via an overarching ‘notary’ that connects entirely separate blockchains in Korea and the Netherlands.’
Traditionally, an international trade finance transaction involving shipments sees payments, administration and the physical transportation of containers occur in separate flows with a paper-intensive manual process. “We will be integrating all these flows in our pilot: from workflow management combined with track & trace to the digitisation of paper documentation such as waybills and the financing of handled freight or services” ABN AMRO’s commercial banking chief Daphne de Kluis explained.
The banking executive envisions “millions of euros” of savings in the long-term due to enhanced efficiency and transparency from blockchain-powered logistics chains.
The blockchain pilot will be entirely paperless and will electronically confirm receipt and payment of the trade alongside real-time sharing of documents that are viewable by the shipper, receiver and port operator.
The three parties, including the port of Rotterdam, will conduct the pilot in January. The Port of Rotterdam Authority, the operator of Europe’s largest and busiest shipping port, notably launched a ‘blockchain field lab’ in 2017 to research and develop applications based the decentralized technology.
Samsung SDS is already part of blockchain consortium comprising of a number of Korean authorities and logistics giants, working toward a unified goal to put all exports and imports in South Korea on a blockchain. In September this year, Samsung SDS entered an agreement with the Korea Customs Service (KCS) to develop a customs logistics service powered by blockchain technology.
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