Today the Global Shipping Business Network (GSBN) confirmed it launched proofs of concept (PoCs) to integrate its blockchain network with trade finance platforms. Bank of China (Hong Kong), DBS Bank and HSBC are participating in the trials. Live pilots will follow the PoCs.
For both Letters of Credit and open account trade finance, it’s important to know when the cargo is loaded onto a ship, making bill of lading data critical. It is this electronic bill of lading (eBL) information that will be accessed via the GSBN network.
GSBN has previously partnered with blockchain network Contour for Letters of Credit and Hong Kong’s eTradeConnect for open account trade finance, but they did not participate in this Proof of Concept.
“BOCHK has been a close partner of GSBN since 2021, with a goal to facilitate trade digitalisation process between the finance and the shipping industries,” James Ho, Deputy General Manager of Transaction Banking Department at Bank of China HK. “We see today’s milestone as a critical step in closing the global trade finance gap, contributing positively to the recovery of the global economy.”
GSBN is a non profit network incorporated in Hong Kong and backed by COSCO SHIPPING lines (COSCO) and ports, Hapag-Lloyd, Hutchison Ports, OOCL, SPG Qingdao Port, PSA International, and the Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG).
The main solution that is in production is its Cargo Release app which improves communication between all the parties at the port of arrival. Processing cargo release in a conventional manner can take days, and the GSBN solution reduces that to 1-2 hours.
In other logistics news, shipping firm Wallenius Wilhemsen recently invested in Vinturas, the blockchain logistics platform for finished cars.
Update: An earlier version incorrectly stated that Contour and eTradeConnect were participants in the PoC, but they were not.