Tuesday, November 2, 2021

New ebook Pushes the Case for Digitalisation of the Container Shipping Industry

Free to Read Download Compares Electronic Air Waybill Progress
Shipping News Feature

NETHERLANDS – WORLDWIDE – Last week we took a look at some of the risk involved in digitalising the documentation which is essential to the transfer of goods shipped, particularly globally under the protection of such as the ubiquitous Bill of Lading.

Despite the potential pitfalls we described, the rush to digitalise ocean freight will continue headlong, much as the increased use of technology in banking has sped up processes for the operators of the systems involved, yet left more possibilities for money to be diverted elsewhere.

For many the mysteries of blockchain technology promising increased security offer little confidence, despite the plaudits of enthusiasts, but there is little doubt that objections will be swept aside when the unarguable benefits of digital systems in terms of speed and accuracy are considered.

One group convinced that the perceived advantages should be taken immediately is the Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA), the clue being in the name. The DCSA was formed precisely to press for the leap into digital transformation through collaboration and widespread adoption of modern standards-based technologies.

This month the DCSA has been looking at the parallel work of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), a sector where speed really is essential and therefore has been keen to usher in systems appropriate to this. It points to the rapid expansion of eCommerce and runs comparisons between the e-Air Way Bill (e-AWB) and the container shipping equivalent the electronic Bill of Lading (eBL).

The DCSA says that IATA‘s initiatives have reduced operational costs for the airline industry by billions of dollars and revolutionised the customer experience for airline passengers worldwide and has now published a freely available ebook describing what needs to be done to digitally transform container shipping and why set standards as well as neutrality are key factors.

This last point may prove a little controversial as IATA is held up as strictly neutral, however even if this is accepted the DCSA was formed by MSC, Maersk, CMA CGM, Hapag-Lloyd, ONE, Evergreen, Yang Ming, HMM and ZIM, in other words all the big hitting vested interests of the container carrying world.

The DCSA also explains what progress has been made so far in digitalising the industry and how readers can contribute to this effort.

The DCSA ebook can be downloaded HERE.