Only a handful of public blockchain solutions are heavily used by governments for conducting regular day-to-day business. CargoX (opens new window) is a leading supply chain solution (opens new window) that relies on IPFS and Web3 infrastructure as its main architectural component.
# The invisible importance of electronic trade documents (ETDs)
In global trade, documents of title (e.g. bill of lading) are traditionally transferred by courier services. If the recipient loses or damages the document, they cannot receive the transported goods from the ship or port. This can result in longer delivery and higher prices for consumers. The same goes for customs clearance processing. If the documents are late, or they have been tampered with, the import will not be authorized and cargo will not be released as expected. Ships are slow and paperwork is sometimes even more so.
CargoX has stepped in with the CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT). The company uses IPFS’ technology to store encrypted documents and tokenize them with NFTs on Ethereum and Polygon (opens new window). This way, documents are transferred between supply chain participants at the speed of a blockchain transaction while retaining all the properties of a valid paper document of title. The platform ensures immutable origin and transfer records, content authenticity validation, as well as transparency, confidentiality, and advanced audit features for all the parties involved in a specific process.
# Trust in CargoX’s use of decentralized storage
These properties assure the highest level of reliability and trust. As a result, CargoX has been granted the approval of the International Group of P&I Clubs – the largest group of liability cover providers for approximately 90% of the world's ocean-going cargo.
“The ideal feature of IPFS for us is that it provides a decentralized storage and delivery network architecture, built on fundamental principles of P2P networking and content-based addressing. The decentralized system of user-operators creates a resilient system of file storage and sharing, suitable for our mission in global trade electronic document delivery,” explains Janez Kranjc, Blockchain Solution Architect at CargoX.
# Using BDT
The CargoX platform simplifies ETD processes and reduces them to a simple user experience:
- Corporate accounts can register on the platform (free of charge) in minutes, and they can validate their profiles with global banks (wire transfer), and the Dun & Bradstreet registry.
- Team member accounts are created for each company to provide a distributed working environment for electronic trade documents. This is virtually impossible to do efficiently with traditional paper documents of title.
- A contact book of corresponding companies can be created ahead of time or during use. The recipients only need to register on the platform.
- Users upload their digital documents or structured data (feature coming soon) to the CargoX Platform through a web UI or via API.
- Documents are hashed, encrypted, enveloped, and stored on IPFS and accessible from any IPFS node.
- An NFT containing crucial information is created and the user can transfer it onto the recipient, providing a simple way to present the document and possession thereof.
- All transfer activity is visible in audit logs while confidentiality is maintained by the blockchain’s basic properties.
- The documents are held – in line with legal requirements – for 10 years after their upload or until all companies that participated in the transfer of the document remove their account from the platform (whichever comes first).
# Egypt is unlocking the future via usage of decentralized storage
The CargoX Platform is authorized and integrated into Egypt’s official NAFEZA single-window trade facilitation platform as the blockchain document transfer gateway service provider. This amounts to millions of documents being processed every year and stored on IPFS.
The system is used by all foreign exporters for sending tokenized trade documentation and mandatory government filings. Twenty-six government entities and 30 seaports and airports use CargoX to ensure Egypt import processes are secure, validated, and optimized, cutting cargo release times from 29 to 9 days.
# An adaptable roadmap
Global trade is one of the most important industries in the world. The CargoX Platform already has 86,000 companies registered and validated by global banks and the Dun & Bradstreet registry on its platform – including all the leading global companies that export to Egypt.
After developing the 3rd generation of the platform, CargoX has a firm roadmap for introducing new essential features for global supply chain participants. The main upgrade will be introducing relayers for faster processing of transfer on the blockchain, while also involving the blockchain community to set-up their relayers.
CargoX will also be introducing structured data tokenization to enable frictionless information flow and provide additional functionalities attached to the core electronic trade documents. In this way, the platform will be of better service to trade finance, manufacturing, energy, all modes of transportation, as well as other government agencies. As these expansions continue, IPFS will be a strategic pillar for the platform architecture.
Learn more about CargoX by reading the blue paper (opens new window). You can also stay up to date on the CargoX blog (opens new window) or follow the project on Twitter (opens new window) or LinkedIn (opens new window).