The Port Of Melbourne Is Thinking Of Disrupting Itself
The Lonsdale Consortium has a 50-year lease of the Port of Melbourne in Australia. It is an organization of institutional investors comprised of the Future Fund, QIC, Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP), and Canadian pension fund OMERS. Per The Australian, these companies have been talking with their customers regarding new technologies that can increase shipping container movements and enhance efficiencies.
The consortium is considering using automated trucks and blockchain technology in a symbiotic fashion at the port, leveraging the benefits of each technology to make the port a better environment for shipping and transport.
QIC’s head of global infrastructure, Ross Israel, told The Australian:
“Commercial trucks can be automated from a point to point. There is no reason why driverless trucks can’t move from A to B in a closed environment on the port. And in terms of maintenance, can we move to a condition-based program, rather than time-based? By putting sensors on assets and then we can know where they are failing.”
In addition to these benefits, blockchain technology will also allow parties in the logistics chain keep track of the origin of goods that move through the port. Per Israel, “the ability to have a private ledger which validates the [provenance] of a good is a powerful security device as well as a[n] enabler of trade.”
QIC recently released a red paper to its customers outlining some of the advantages of blockchain technology. QIC and its partners had acquired the lease of the Port of Melbourne in 2016 for $9.7 billion.