The Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA) has released interface standards for the submissions of shipping instructions and Bill of Lading (B/L) issuance, including API definitions, and will soon release an API reference implementation.
In a statement, the DCSA said the standards will enable shippers to process a standardised electronic Bill of Lading (e-B/L) from all carriers that have implemented them.
Carrier customers looing for a standardised approach to e-B/L from multiple carriers can include these standards as requirements in the procurement process.
The DCSA Interface Standard for the Bill of Lading can be freely downloaded from the DCSA web site. The API definitions are published on SwaggerHub, and the reference implementation will soon be available on GitHub.
This is the second publication of the multi-year DCSA eDocumentation initiative which will deliver standards to enable digitalisation of end-to-end container shipping documentation, starting with the B/L.
Through this initiative, DCSA aims to facilitate acceptance and adoption of an e-B/L by regulators, banks and insurers and to unify communication between these organisations and customers, carriers and all other stakeholders involved in a transaction.
Subsequent releases of DCSA’s e-Documentation initiative will include data and process standards for: booking request and confirmation, arrival notice and release shipment.