IPCSA incorporates terminal codes as standard in messaging

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The International Port Community Systems Association (IPCSA) and the Bureau International des Containers (BIC) have signed an agreement to deliver more clarity across the supply chain.

IPCSA will incorporate the BIC Facility Codes API into the Network of Trusted Networks (NoTN), developed by IPCSA and its members to provide predictability, visibility, and certainty within the supply chain.

The codes will assist users in identifying the container facility where their cargo is currently located.

“Our agreement with the Bureau International des Containers will see IPCSA members using the BIC’s API to obtain both BIC Facility Codes and SMDG terminal codes as standard in messaging through the NoTN,” said IPCSA Secretary General Richard Morton.

“This will eliminate the confusion that has happened in the past due to there being many different codes for the same location.”

“Now PCS users will be able to find exactly which facility a given container is in, which facilities it has passed through, and where it is going, with no ambiguity or uncertainty.”

The introduction of standards aims to enhance communication and efficiency at terminals by providing the latitude and longitude of facilities, each identified by a unique nine-character code.

This identifier is used in electronic messages such as gate events, interchanges, repair status and most recently, container tracking messages. 

BIC has worked with DCSA and their members, the Intermodal Association of North America (IANA), container lessors, and software providers to ensure a smooth transition and adoption of the facility code list.

“The use of non-standard codes has been a longstanding issue in the industry, with many shipping lines, container lessors, terminals and others having adopted their own ‘in-house’ versions over decades,” added Douglas Owen of BIC underlining the importance of standards to promote digitalisation across the industry.

Earlier this month, IPCSA welcomed LOGINK as new participant into the NoTN.

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