The project revolves around a new application, Secure Container Release, which replaces the PIN code with a digital signal: a solution that is significantly less susceptible to fraud. It is not only intended to make container handling more efficient, but also safer. Participants in the three-month trial include CMA-CGM, Hapag-Lloyd, MSC, ONE-Line, Hutchison Ports ECT Rotterdam, Rotterdam Fruit Wharf, Milestone Fresh, VTO, Portmade and the application developer T-Mining.

Drivers who plan to collect a specific container at the terminal need to have a valid pick-up right, which will be issued by a shipping company. The freight forwarder subsequently orders a transport firm to retrieve the container at the terminal. In the existing arrangement, the pick-up right is confirmed to the terminal by means of a PIN code. This procedure requires a range of manual actions from a number of different parties. Any hitches or errors in the release process can lead to a waste of time, complaints and aggravation among clients and partners, as well as possible opportunities for fraud. The application tested in this trial could replace PIN-based authorization altogether.

Moreover, it is stated that during the pilot project, the pick-up rights for the import of containers will be converted from a PIN code into a digital token with the aid of a blockchain-based application. You could compare it to a relay race: the token is a kind of digital baton that smoothly passes from one party to the next. Blockchain technology prevents this authorisation from being stolen or copied along the way. This makes the release process safer for everyone in the chain who is involved in the process.

Concluding, Emile Hoogsteden, Director of Commerce of the Port of Rotterdam Authority commented that

The current pilot project is a good example. During this project, the different participants will be using a blockchain application that enables them to safely and efficiently organise the release procedure followed by the various parties in the chain.’