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Pakistan Customs joins TradeLens

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Pakistan Customs has entered an agreement with TradeLens to digitise import-export documentation of the containerised cargo moving in and out of the country. 

The Pakistan Single Window (PSW) Company signed the agreement on behalf of Pakistan Customs with TradeLens, a blockchain-underpinned logistics platform supported by five of the six largest ocean carriers globally.

PSW integration with TradeLens will help Pakistan Customs and other trade regulators to improve their operational efficiency and create value through the blockchain platform.

The immutability of blockchain-underpinned document information is important in the identification of illegal activities, as well as, improving the smooth operation of legal trade.

Pakistan’s international trade ecosystem is being rapidly transformed through the introduction of technology driven initiatives led by the Pakistan Single Window.

The country’s authorities recognise the potential benefits of digitising supply chains for efficiencies, enhanced transparency, and data-driven decision making.

The authorisation to sign the collaboration came from the PSW Governing Council chaired by Shaukat Tarin. The CEO of PSW Aftab Haider formally signed the agreement with Irtaza Hussain, the Regional Head of Network for TradeLens at IBM.

Cross-border containerised supply chains are some of the largest and most complex business ecosystems in the world today. It is not uncommon for 30 independent parties, 100 people and up to 200 exchanges of information to be connected to a single shipment.

With increased complexity comes increased cost. Shippers or beneficial cargo owners (BCOs) need consistent, auditable and immutable data from multiple sources to effectively manage their supply chains.

Marvin Erdly, Head of TradeLens at IBM, commented, “The growth of the TradeLens’ network is evidence that participants from all across the supply chain ecosystem can derive significant value through digital collaboration. 

“Pakistan now joins an increasing number of connected Customs Authorities on the TradeLens platform exploring innovative solutions to enhance global trade access and enhance process efficiencies for all involved”.

TradeLens is a neutral platform brings together data from the entire global supply chain ecosystem including shippers and cargo owners, 3PLs and freight forwarders, intermodal operators, customs and government authorities, ports and terminals, and several ocean carriers.

This data allows TradeLens and its network partners to modernise manual and paper-based documents by replacing them with blockchain-enabled digital solutions. It also allows the network partners to provide their customers with deeper visibility into the entire journey for their cargo from origin to destination and reduce uncertainty allowing for better planning and reduced inventory costs.

TradeLens welcomed its first network member in Pakistan, Al-Hamd International Container Terminal, earlier this year.  

PSW is an initiative of Pakistan’s federal government with a focus of transforming the trade and industry ecosystem.

In December 2021 the Port of Thessaloniki became the first Greek port to adopt blockchain technology, integrating TradeLens into its operations.

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