OCEAN CARRIERS COMMIT TO 100% E-BILL OF LADINGS BY 2030
The Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA) announced last week that its nine ocean carrier members commit to 100% adoption of an electronic bill of lading (eBL) based on DCSA standards by 2030, with an interim target of converting 50% of original bills of lading to digital within five years.
The DCSA notes in the statement signed by its members that switching away from the transfer of physical paper bills of lading could save $6.5 billion in direct costs for stakeholders, enable $30-40 billion in annual global trade growth, which would transform the customer experience and improve sustainability. Currently, ocean carriers issue around 45 million bills of lading a year. In 2021, only 1.2%of these were electronic. Customers are often required to send and receive paper, obtain stamps and signatures to execute the physical transportation from origin to destination. This represents a time-consuming and environmentally expensive process for customers.
The signatories therefore call on all parties involved in the maritime supply chain – shippers, forwarders, governments, financial institutions, and insurance agencies – to work together to make this commitment a reality.