The Port of Rotterdam Authority has partnered with the Municipality of Rotterdam in the Netherlands to introduce a field lab to develop applications and solutions using blockchain technology.
The newly launched BlockLab initiative is set to receive funding from the Municipality of Rotterdam and will be supported by regional development corporation Innovation Quarter.
BlockLabis aims to develop and test theoretical blockchain ideas, and is expected to begin operation with a core team of five people based at Rotterdam's Cambridge Innovation Center.
A consortium of developers and users are set to further develop the ideas into concrete opportunities in a real-world environment.
BlockLab will also work together with the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences to develop a curriculum to attract new blockchain researchers.
Blockchain technology is designed to help users perform transactions without the need for a third party, as well as guarantee necessary checks and balances. It also ensures the automatic transaction of data.
Additionally, the technology enables users to establish a finely connected decentralised power network for both companies, including ports and consumers, and is also expected to ease the flow of cargo at ports.
Port of Rotterdam Authority president and CEO Allard Castelein said: “This alone makes it very interesting to us.
“But I’m also thinking of the numerous applications that can be realised within logistics chains thanks to blockchain, allowing us to organise cargo flows more efficiently.
"This step is seamlessly in line with our ‘smartest port’ ambitions.”
Furthermore, a blockchain application for stock financing in the port logistics sector is slated to be presented at the lab's opening, which has been jointly developed by Exact and ABN AMRO.