04 October 2018

Singapore national carrier and technology giant readying for next phase of co-operation

Singapore, 04 October 2018 - Pacific International Lines (Pte) Ltd (“PIL”), Singapore’s leading containership operator, collaborates with IBM Singapore (“IBM”) in another blockchain trial to design and create an electronic bill of lading which will significantly enhance the documentation process in supply chain management.

The PIL-IBM collaboration was supported by Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, Singapore Shipping Association,Infocomm Media Development Authority, Singapore Customs (National TradePlatform), and Bank of China Limited Singapore Branch (BOC).

A Bill of Lading is the crucial piece of documentation in the facilitation of international trade as it contains legal and commercial information:

  • - Evidence of contract of carriage;
  • - Receipt of goods; and
  • - Title of the goods

Traditionally, a Bill of Lading is a physical document which banks rely on to provide trade financing. The Bill of Lading is usually mailed to various parties leaving it open to fraud, loss of the original document, document handling costs resulting in much inefficiency across the supply chain.

To improve the process, PIL and IBM have proposed using an electronic Bill of Lading (e-BL) to streamline and replicate the paper trail online on a blockchain ledger created by IBM.

The e-BL will do away with the hard copy paper trail, cut unnecessary handling costs and the possibility of fraud.

Lisa Teo, Executive Director of PIL, said: “This is a big step forward for PIL. As an international shipping company, we believe we have a role to play in enhancing efficiencies within the intermodal transport logistics ecosystem. Working with a complex logistic network comprising ports and terminals, agencies, government entities, banks and shippers; systematic supply chain management is increasingly important to lower costs through the chain by cutting unnecessary expense, movements and handling.

“Traditionally, information flow is predominantly handled via manual processes and the supplychain is slowed down when there are many points of communication within its framework. The use of blockchain technology to allow for the direct exchange of documents and information via the decentralised network to boost transparency, eliminate disputes forgeries and unnecessary risks will be key for this industry to progress.”

The team plans to extend the e-BL to shadow an end-to-end shipment in real time. The creation of the electronic Bill of Lading will be in line with PIL’sultimate goal of the creation of intermodal transport logistics ecosystem which incorporates the use of blockchain.


About PIL

Pacific International Lines (PIL) is the world’s 9th top containership operator and one of the largest ship-owners in South-east Asia. PIL owns and operates with a fleet of around 180 container and multi-purpose vessels, serving over 500 locations in 100 countries worldwide.
The group has several business units such as container manufacturing, ship recycling, marine service, real estate, depot and logistics services. One of PIL’s subsidiaries, Singamas Container Holdings Ltd, is one of the largest container manufacturers in the world, with 9 manufacturing facilities and 11depots in the Asian-Pacific region.

For media queries, please contact:
Edward Ion / Valerie Lim
PR advisers to PIL
Tel: +65 9111 6871 / +65 9755 3636
Email: Edward.ion@helixpr.asia / Valerie.lim@helixpr.asia