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ICC, Perlin to develop blockchain ship registry for Singapore

singapore port trade

Yesterday, the Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) said it is working with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and blockchain startup Perlin for a ship registration system. The blockchain-based International E-Registry of Ships (IERS) is being developed to enhance the cumbersome process of ship registration and renewal.

Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) is supporting this project and is exploring an open Application Programming Interface (API) interface for the registration process.

Owing to its geographical position, Singapore is one of the biggest ports in the world. It also has the fifth largest ship registry in the world, with a fleet of over 4,700 vessels. The current process of ship registration involves a declaration of ownership, builder’s certificate, sale documents and a certificate of ship survey, among other things. This requires a lot of paperwork to verify that a vessel meets regulatory requirements.

Currently, vessel registration is done using the Marinet web portal managed by the MPA. Using blockchain, SSA aims to do away with the manual processes and reduce time, costs and risk of errors.

“This opportunity to collaborate with the ICC and Perlin to co-create the world’s first blockchain system for preparation of ship registration not only brings solid efficiency gains and cost savings for our members but also the wider global maritime community,” said Steen Brodsgaard Lund, SSA Council Member and Chairman of the Digital Transformation Committee.

IERS will be powered by Perlin’s Wavelet Protocol which uses smart contracts, a dashboard to view vessel details and a more comfortable data entry system. Document verification will be automated, and open API’s will be integrated into the platform.

Perlin’s blockchain is not yet live and is currently running pilots for different use cases. Unlike many other enterprise blockchain platforms, Perlin’s network is public. It makes the system more accessible to industry players. This supports the objective of the ICC to develop an IERS standard for the global maritime industry.

“Working with Perlin, our goal is for the IERS built in Singapore as the world’s first digital blockchain shipping registry solution to be showcased and adopted globally to help power the next 100 years of shipping-based trade across all industries,” said John Denton AO, Secretary General of the ICC, quoted by All About Shipping.

Perlin’s technology protocol is not a blockchain. Instead it’s a directed acyclic graph (DAG) like IoTA and Hedera Hashgraph. Earlier this year, ICC and Perlin announced a blockchain alliance to support supply chains and cross-border trade finance. A few months ago, the Dubai Chamber of Commerce partnered with ICC and Perlin to offer blockchain-based trade finance solutions to its members.

Meanwhile, Lloyds Register of Shipping announced a prototype of a blockchain-enabled register tool. It is working with London-based Applied Blockchain to integrate distributed ledger technology (DLT).

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