In cross border trade, and in our particular case (http://logistics.afig.io) , trade between Australia and China, the Free Trade Zone and Customs Bonded Warehousing play a very important role. The process of transferring goods from Producer, Manufacturer, Exporter, Importer, Wholesaler and end markets is a complex one with many challenges, some of which relate to Security, Compliance and Documentation, Visibility and naturally, Fraud.
- Cargo needs to be secure during transportation and storage;
- The need for accurate documentation subject to audits from customs authorities;
- Visibility of cargo during transfers, transit and storage;
- Avoiding possibility of fraud and ensuring trust between all parties involved in handling the shipment.
Technologies in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), and Blockchain or similar can now be put to use in the Logistics Sector.
AI helps identify potential scheduling efficiencies, IoT helps in maintaining control and visibility of shipments, as well as collect valuable management data, and blockchain can combine all the inputs from these technologies and applications to create a secure process nobody can tamper with.
Combined with other technologies in the IoT and Cloud segment, the logistics business can operate across borders and into domestic markets in a very fast, secure and efficient manner, boosting trade between parties. Combined with Blockchain in particular, the following challenges can be addressed:
- Mitigating the risk of Fraud: Blockchain (and Holochain) are decentralised by nature and requires a network of nodes and computers to approve or authorise a transaction. Therefore, it is impossible for one individual or a party colluding to override controls and change or delete records. The possibility of issuing fake documentation is nil, as all documents are validated and verified by parties within the network system.
- Improving Compliance: Regulations, customs requirements, and logistics and transport documentation is a simple process connecting IT systems and parties. All transactions such as inspection, storage, in/out-bonding are visible in real time, accessible to all parties concerned. All transactions are governed by “smart contracts” used to effect payments on time. Recording of all actions and outputs happen in the blockchain systems which makes it immutable and enduring.
- Better Reconciliation: Due to the visibility and consensus, reconciliation is straightforward, reducing any issues among parties and can include any level of data including charges levied, service level agreements, billing etc.
- Security is Enhanced: All aspects of security can be managed with blockchain, including ID management, access control, securing goods in storage, tracking (with IoT), and reporting of movement and tampering.
- Last but not least, it makes for a seamless, and yet enhanced customer experience, in some cases duty is pre-paid, and customer clearance is pre-empted before the arrival of the shipment.
All in all, the use of these emerging technologies will improve performance and security in the sector.
AFIG is working on a number of solutions under its AI Hub approach aimed at a number of industries, which include the logistics sector, however, in addition to the AI component, we are also interested in the human interface which makes up Consciousness ( a missing element in AI), or more to the point Artificial Consciousness (AC).
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