The recent Blockchain Global Revolution was held in Toronto Canada where the FedEx, CIO Rob Carter called on governments to integrate mandated blockchain standard for the worldwide shipping industry.
He claims that this would allow authorities to better track the provenance of goods and help combat the trafficking of counterfeit items and illegal goods.
So where Carter says FedEx isn’t an organisation to push for more regulatory control, he thinks that mandated blockchain standards would be incredibly helpful, as they would digitise the information-packed paper trail.
“There’s an incredible amount of information moving with an international package. An incredible amount of paperwork [such as] certificates of origin, and certain commodities require specific licenses. That information moves sometimes in digital forms and sometimes paper forms. As we move toward a more digital world, blockchain is where you piece all that together.”
Furthermore, he emphasises that blockchain technology is far superior to the current digitised documentation transfer systems, which use technology over six decades old that doesn’t present real-time data.
Carter thinks that if the shipping industry was to adopt a standardised blockchain solution, it would create an even space that the whole industry would benefit from whilst edging away from proprietary systems.
FedEx Logistics CEO Richard Smith also spoke on the panel in regards to governments who want to fight the trafficking of counterfeit and pirated goods.
In Smith’s eyes, blockchain is THE solutions. But governments have expressed their concern that still hasn’t been widely adopted.
“‘You’re the government. You can mandate that it’s widely adopted.’ Why not plant a flag in the ground and say in the next five years all importers have to be up on blockchain? It’s the only way you’re going to be able to do it without slowing commerce to a crawl.”
As we all know, governments and politics are slow bodies that take their time to integrate change. Shipping leaders are pushing for this to happen sooner rather than later though. If a standardised and mandated blockchain system is implemented, it would be one of the first cases of mainstream adoption when it comes to blockchain.