Maritime Industry Eyes Blockchain for Seafarer Certification

BlockchainIllustration; Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license

Maritime Blockchain Labs (MBL), founded by blockchain technology and governance companies BLOC and the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, has established a consortium that will pilot a blockchain-based seafarer certification system.

The project aims to streamline and expedite processes that can be marred by a lack of verification for safety documentation, paper-based certificate management and a lack of access to validated safety and training certifications of seafarers.

The consortium brings together multiple stakeholders who either rely on, or support crew certification. These include shipping companies, including Danish shipping major, Maersk, tanker operator Heidmar, and PTC Holdings Corp. Also included are technology enablers Hanseaticsoft, maritime platforms providers Navozyme and C-LOG, as well as international seafarer welfare charity The Mission to Seafarers.

The demonstrator scope will focus on an end-to-end demonstration of a digital certification and endorsement process utilising a digital repository for verified crew documentation, training logs and approval system.

Specifically, the focus will be upon the STCW certificate issuance and relevant supporting documentation from engineering officers located in multiple jurisdictions and the endorsement of recognition from a maritime authority for vessel embarkation and disembarkation.

Upon validation and scaling, the final solution would enable individual seafarers to manage their certificate repository from original issuance, for maritime administrations to manage the renewal and endorsement across jurisdictions, for crew management organizations to manage seafarers for crewing of vessels and for vessel owners to receive an overview of their crew, certificates and endorsements.

“Building and maintaining an intuitive and user-friendly platform for the management of crew certification will bring hugely significant benefits to all stakeholders. We are looking forward to developing and building the solutions with the consortium,” Graeme Thomson, Head of Northern Europe Manning Office from Maersk, said.

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