Commonwealth Bank of Australia Tests Ethereum Blockchain Supply System

The Australian bank facilitated a shipment of 17 tonnes of almonds between Sunraysia and Hamburg by using Ethereum blockchain.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), which is one of the largest commercial banks in the country, has tested a new system based on the Ethereum blockchain. CBA has claimed successful facilitation of a shipment of 17 tonnes of almonds between Australia and Germany by using a trade-chain system, developed on the Ethereum blockchain, the bank said in press-release on Monday.

CBA facilitated all three key services in this type of trade deals–shipment operations, documentations and finance issues - by using the cryptocurrency technology. Developed as a distributed ledger technology (DLT), blockchain can reduce cost and speed up the transactions by automatically generating smart contracts. Moreover, the DLT brings transparency as it tracks all changes.

“We believe that blockchain can help our partners reduce the burden of administration on their businesses and enable them to deliver best-in-class services to their customers,” Chris Scougall, managing director of industrials and logistics in client coverage at CBA, said in a press-release.

CBA’s blockchain test, which delivered the almond shipment between Sunraysia in Australia and the German city of Hamburg, included four companies: agriculture player Olam Orchards Australia, Pacific National for rail haulage, port landlord Port of Melbourne, stevedore Patrick Terminals and shipping carrier OOCL. Hardware and software support was provided by Australian IoT provider LX Group.

CBA blockchain services allow all parties in the trade deal to monitor every action during the delivery operations. They were able to view and track the location of the shipment as well as to see the conditions, such as temperature and humidity inside the container. By using the internet of technology (IoT) devices, trading partners were allowed to upload and access key documents at any time.

 “Emerging blockchain technology creates the potential for multi-beneficial productivity gains to Australia’s supply-chain. Through understanding volume loads and shipments coming down the supply chain, we are able to prepare strategies to meet the trade demands of the future,” Melissa Poon, general manager for trade and development at the Port of Melbourne, explained.

CBA pilot used the Ethereum blockchain, but the company said that it analyzes all other DLTs for the official launch of the service. CBA wants to use a private blockchain, meaning that only participants that are authorized will access the information.

CBA, which tested blockchain in trade transactions two years ago, is part of several big financial institutions such as US JP Morgan Chase and UK Barclays that eye cryptocurrency technology as a way to expand its client base.