August 20, 2021: GatewayRail, India’s intermodal logistics service provider and rail-linked Inland Container Depots (ICD) operator, has become the first rail operator in India to join TradeLens, a blockchain-underpinned digital logistics platform, jointly developed by A.P. Moller – Maersk and IBM. The association between GatewayRail and TradeLens is a major milestone in digitising India’s vast inland container logistics ecosystem with a significant impact on efficiency gained by exporters and importers.
Last year, DP World, CMA CGM and MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company have joined TradeLens. DP World aims to connect all its 82 marine and inland container terminals, as well as feeder companies and logistics divisions with TradeLens.
TradeLens brings together data from the entire global supply chain ecosystem. This data allows TradeLens and its network partners to modernise manual and paper-based documents by replacing them with blockchain-enabled digital solutions. It also allows the network partners to provide their customers with deeper visibility into the entire journey for their cargo from origin to destination.
GatewayRail currently operates a fleet of 31 rakes connecting western Gateway ports such as Nhava Sheva, Pipavav and Mundra to its ICDs at Garhi Harsaru in Gurugram, Piyala in Faridabad, Sahnewal in Ludhiana and at Viramgam in Ahmedabad region, where the TradeLens solutions will be deployed in the first phase. Customers moving import and export containers on these services will be able to make full use of the solutions provided on the TradeLens platform such as the TradeLens eBL, an electronic Bill of Lading using blockchain technology and integrated with trade finance companies and the Core product that offers true end-to-end visibility in addition to digital documentation.
“At GatewayRail, we have a commitment towards ease of doing business through digitisation of logistics. Joining the TradeLens platform allows us to lead the change in Indian intermodal logistics ecosystem. It is the right time to change over from the manual, paper-based documentation and move towards a digital solution that drives value for all the stakeholders in the journey of import and export cargo,” said Sachin Bhanushali, CEO and Director Gateway Rail Freight.
TradeLens is a neutral platform which utilises data from shippers and cargo owners, 3PLs and freight forwarders, intermodal operators, customs and government authorities, ports and terminals, and several ocean carriers. This data along with digital documentation will help GatewayRail’s customers to improve their operational efficiency and create value through the blockchain platform.
“The TradeLens network is rapidly expanding in India, and we are extremely delighted to have GatewayRail as the first rail operator directly integrated to our platform. Digitising supply chains is high on agenda for Indian logistics and building on this network is a step in the right direction. There is no doubt that digitizing supply chains will ultimately help in bringing down the total cost of logistics, which is an important cornerstone of the National Logistics Policy,” said Bimal Kanal, head of TradeLens, South Asia. He further added, “Being an early adopter of TradeLens in India, GatewayRail has done what major rail companies in the western countries of America and Europe have already completed. Joining the TradeLens platform will assist GatewayRail to meet the ambition of the foundation carriers, including Maersk, MSC, CMA-CGM, Hapag Lloyd and ONE, to bring secure data sharing for driving high levels of efficiency.”