DCSA Begins Final Phase of eBL Platform Interoperability PoC
Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA), a neutral, non-profit group established to further digitalisation and standardisation of container shipping, in conjunction with its nine member carriers, has announced phase two of its electronic bill of lading (eBL) platform interoperability proof of concept (PoC).
The PoC will be conducted in conjunction with CargoX, edoxOnline, essDOCS and WAVE BL. The companies will implement DCSA eBL Interoperability Standards to test eBL interoperability through the full bill of lading lifecycle using data that mirrors a live shipment.
Previously, DCSA has released standards for eBL data formats and interfaces.
The eBL interoperability PoC leverages DCSA eBL Interoperability Standards 1.0 – Beta 1. Upon completion of the PoC, DCSA eBL Interoperability Standards 1.0 will be officially released and free to download for any platform provider to incorporate into their eBL solutions to ensure interoperability with DCSA standards-based eBLs.
Phase one of the PoC, funded and supported by all DCSA carrier members, was completed in May 2022 with seven actively participating carrier members, ExxonMobil and four of six IGP&I-approved eBL solutions providers, namely CargoX, edoxOnline, essDOCS and WAVE BL.
The standards and PoC design were adjusted for phase two based on phase one participant feedback. Successful completion of phase two is expected before the end of 2022 and will ensure full technological interoperability between participating eBL platforms.
In addition, DCSA is working to address the legal framework needed between solution providers to enable cross-platform eBL transfer.
Stefan Kukman, CEO at CargoX said: “eBL will bring countless benefits to the industry including greater sustainability and efficiency. With our platform for blockchain document transfer (BDT), eBLs are smarter and more secure than paper-based alternatives.”
Fully interoperable eBL will enable shippers and beneficial cargo owners (BCOs) to choose an eBL provider based on service levels and capabilities, while maintaining the ability to exchange electronic documentation with carriers, banks and other parties that may use different platforms.
Georgios Diallas, Global Strategy & Improve Manager for the Marine Container Team and ExxonMobil said: “For an eBL system to be effective, it has to be inter-operable across different platforms, and we applaud DCSA and its members for publishing standards to enable inter-operability.
"We encourage all eBL platform providers to help fast track eBL adoption by embracing DCSA standards.”
“Our mission is to radically simplify and foster trust in global trade by enabling the instant, secure transfer of eBLs and other trade-related documents,” said Bhavna Sethi, Chief Strategy Officer for WAVE BL.
Thomas Bagge, CEO of DCSA urged all industry stakeholders to get involved and be part of the movement to work towards 100% eBL adoption.