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Blockchain consortium for marine fuels

Maritime Blockchain Labs (MBL), a subsidiary of Blockchain Labs for Open Collaboration (BLOC), has established a consortium including Lloyd’s Register, Precious Shipping, Bostomar, BIMCO, International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA) and GoodFuels, which aims to address traceability and transparency in the marine fuel supply chain using blockchain technologies.

{mprestriction ids="1,2"}MBL says that its research into the sector has identified the bunker industry as an ideal potential use case for blockchain technology, to increase transparency, create better compliance and support stronger governance.

The consortium will evaluate how blockchain technologies could help to provide an efficient, tamper-resistant and auditable chain of custody on quality and quantity recording activities, together with a reputation system on the compliance of fuels prior to purchase. The project represents the initial stage of the Lloyd’s Register Foundation-funded MBL initiative.

“MBL takes an industry-led approach – meaning that the solutions will be identified, designed, and tested by the industry itself, with MBL facilitating governance and developing the technology to ensure these solutions are relevant and used,” said Deanna MacDonald, CEO and co-founder of BLOC.

“A consortium approach is essential due to the need to cross regulatory boundaries and work within different organisational bodies and systems.”

“Too often with blockchain, and digital initiatives in shipping in general, we see a top-down approach where new technology is pushed on the industry. However, this means that complex human and governance elements are ignored, limiting the eventual adoption and usefulness of the technology.”

Each member of the consortium represents a different actor in the marine fuels value chain or wider shipping industry, and will be expected to contribute their particular insight as the consortium builds and validates this blockchain use case.

“As an off-taker of marine fuels, it’s vital for us to ensure that the fuel we use is compliant – particularly when we think about the market post-2020, and the need to ensure the quality of blended products coming in to meet the 0.5 per cent sulphur limit. Blockchain is ideally placed to create the reliable chain of custody we need to do this,” said Khalid Hashim, managing director at Precious Shipping.{/mprestriction}

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