Exis Technologies, a global leader in IT solutions for the management of dangerous goods by sea for over thirty years has recently entered into a collaborative agreement with Maritime Blockchain Labs (MBL), a consortium founded by BLOC and the Lloyd's Register Foundation (LRF) to explore the use of blockchain in tackling the significant risks and challenges associated with the declaration and handling of dangerous goods. Exis will be using their industry experience to help the MBL consortium with the build and test of a demo prototype to assess the potential for distributed ledger technology (DLT) in the maritime supply chain.
According to the Cargo Incident Notification System (CINS), nearly 25% of all serious incidents onboard containerships were attributable to misdeclared cargo. ICHCA International, the cargo handling operative's association, has calculated that of the 60 million packed containers moved each year, 10%are declared as dangerous goods with some ships carrying more than 1,000 containers with dangerous goods on any given voyage. Shipping lines are therefore keen to ensure that dangerous goods are properly classified, packaged, packed and declared throughout the supply chain. Most of the significant ship fires are attributed to incorrectly declared dangerous goods, often exacerbated by criminal non-declaration or fraud.
Exis, the software division of container inspection company National Cargo Bureau based in New York, is at the forefront of developing new initiatives with industry partners to reduce incidents at sea caused by misdeclared and undeclared dangerous goods in the shipping process. Exis already supplies Hazcheck Systems to manage declared dangerous goods for IMDG Code compliance to 9 of the top 10 container lines, including a web service and a toolkit to integrate with existing container line booking systems. In recent years, Exis has developed new solutions with partners including a portal for sharing operator, vessel and port restrictions among ports and operators; a web-based database and access portal for inspection companies to plan and enter details of cargo inspections; and a cargo screening service to identify misdeclared and undeclared dangerous goods.
Katrina Abhold, Project Manager at BLOC and coordinator of this Maritime Blockchain Lab commented, "We are excited to have Exis Technologies collaborating with us on this project. The experience Exis has in dangerous goods shipping and its solutions like Hazcheck Systems will be a great addition to our consortium. It will be interesting to find out how such combined technologies can be applied in a new way to help address this ongoing issue in the shipping sector."