Blockchain is mostly known for its role in cryptocurrency but it consists of a way to record transactions in an open, distributed ledger. Automaker Tesla has been linked to some crypto projects in the past, with their onboard computers being powerful having some owners tried using them to mine cryptocurrency.
Today, Tesla is working with the Shanghai Port Group to test if blockchain can make the process of importing goods into China easier. This may be the first time we’ve heard of Tesla using blockchain in its business.
Blockchain-based logistics provider CargoSmart announced it completed a blockchain pilot for the cargo release process with COSCO SHIPPING LINES (COSCO), Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG), and Tesla.
The cargo release process is heavy on paper documentation. The pilot enabled easy verification of consignee and shipping agent with the ocean carrier, which helped the customer, Tesla, to pick up its cargo from the terminal faster.
The pilot, which was conducted in December, used blockchain to share relevant shipping data and documentation among concerned parties, including Tesla. Access to shared data source streamlined the entire process and enabled Tesla to “accelerate its cargo pick up procedures on a trusted and secure platform,” according to CargoSmart.
In the words of Wu Yu, head of COSCO’s logistics division, the pilot “showcased significant efficiency gains not only in the cargo release process but also for downstream supply chain planning by presenting a single source of truth for documentation for all involved parties.”
CargoSmart announced that the pilot program was successful and they plan to move forward with their partners to trial the blockchain app in other Asian ports including in Qingdao, China, and in Laem Chabang, Thailand. The company further aims to create a consortium, owned by shipping operators, who will run and administer the distributed ledger system.
According to reports, the Chinese officials have been quick to provide supplies the company needed to recover quickly from the coronavirus outbreak earlier this year. Tesla has reportedly focusing its energies in China and could be about to release a new long-range auto specifically for the Chinese market as early as this week.