Misr Technology Services (MTS), which operates Egypt’s National Single Window for Foreign Trade platform (Nafeza), has authorized CargoX to act as the blockchain document transfer gateway for the Advance Cargo Information (ACI) System. Beginning 1 July 2021, all cargo inbound to Egypt will require ACI declarations according to the newly minted Egyptian Customs law #207.

Egypt’s National Single Window for Foreign Trade platform (Nafeza)

MTS established Nafeza under the mandate of the Ministry of Finance of Egypt in 2020. MTS has now been mandated to design an ACI documentation process, and the CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT) has been authorized as the blockchain service provider for immutably registering and transferring the shipping documents with Ethereum technology.

MTS implemented a national platform that covers Egyptian airports, seaports, land ports, dry ports, and free zones in compliance with international standards and best practices.

Nafeza is an integrated information platform. The system was built to integrate and coordinate procedures and information exchange within Egypt’s foreign trade system. It allows the business and the trade community to submit all documents and transactions for customs, control authorities, and ports into a single system.

The data is submitted only once through an online portal to fulfill all regulatory requirements related to the release of goods. The platform operates in accordance with the international standards of trade-related procedures and customs requirements for the clearance of goods, to convert Egypt into “One Logistical Area”. ACI filing is just one of the numerous services provided by NAFEZA.

Captain Ossama Al Sharif, CEO and Chairman of MTS said, “Egypt is proud of its maritime heritage, and we see technological advancements as a driving force of global trade and shipping security, and digitalization and data visibility are essential for better efficiency and transparency.

These two leading technology companies working hand in hand will offer a revolutionary solution for the whole region,” Al Sharif explained.

Mr. Stefan Kukman, CEO of CargoX said, “We are proud to have been chosen by MTS as a strategic partner to provide the key neutral blockchain technology for improving security in the global trade lanes that run through Egypt,” and added, “we believe this is the beginning of a great partnership.

Mr. Gamal Kotb, General Manager of Misr Technology Systems said, “We have built the single window system (Nafeza) for trade facilitation in record time, relying on technology and service providers such as CargoX.

Kotb added: “We believe blockchain technology is changing many industries at once – and we are proud that Egypt is yet again a global innovator and a key reference for modernization.

Mr. Vjeran Ortynski, Chief Business Development Officer at CargoX said, “Governments and companies with a strong digitalization agenda are showing the way for all the rest to follow while gaining a strategic advantage.

Ortynski continued “The Advance Cargo Information functionality builds on the immutability and tamper-proof concept of our public blockchain technology while providing real-time transparency and auditability where it naturally fits – in moving goods between countries or continents”.

Taking the lead: Egypt

Since ancient times, Egypt has played a large role in the development of the global shipping industry. It provides a vital artery to global trade, namely the Suez Canal. In order to serve an average container port throughput of approximately 6.5M TEU, the country is strategically developing its maritime transport sector with the most advanced modern technologies.

The Government of Egypt is one of the first in the world to implement ACI with the use of blockchain technology in such a way to exhibit unparalleled dedication to technological advancement in the maritime shipping industry and customs clearance technology. 

CargoX Platform for ACI processing

CargoX has upgraded its award-winning CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT) with Advance Cargo Information manifestation capabilities. These capabilities are designed around the requirements of the World Customs Organization (WCO) Standards to Secure and Facilitate Global Trade (SAFE) Framework, as introduced by the Government of Egypt. 

For the needs of the Egyptian Customs Authority, and in partnership with MTS, CargoX will act as a gateway for blockchain document transfer, including ACI declaration envelopes, bills of lading, and other original documents required.

Using the CargoX Platform for ACI allows customs authorities to stop relying on declarations from importers. Instead, each document can be easily traced back to its origin, directly to the issuer, thanks to the CargoX technology based on the public blockchain.

ACI filing price shall be set at USD 50.00, with a grace period until the end of April 2021, and the fee applying as of May 1st, 2021. 

New Egyptian Law Requires ACI Declaration

The Egyptian Customs Authority, part of the Ministry of Finance, implemented Egyptian Customs Law #207 in November 2020. 

The ACI declaration shall be made mandatory as of 1 July 2021. Once registered on the Nafeza platform, companies involved in the shipping process can receive the Advanced Cargo Information Declaration number (ACID). The ACID shall be stipulated on all shipping documents sent through the CargoX Platform, as well as the identification numbers of the parties to the bill of lading. 

If the ACID is not included in the shipping documents, the goods will not be cleared and will be returned without discharge at the Egyptian ports.  

Advance Cargo Information (ACI)

By following a standardized, modern ACI process, compliant with the WCO SAFE Framework – updated with ACI in 2018 – customs authorities will have information about the cargo even before it reaches the country of import. This enables them to assess potential risks, streamline their workflows, support pre-clearance of shipments, and conduct documentation checks even before shipments depart from the country of origin. 

Misr Technology Services (MTS)

Misr Technology Services (MTS) is a trade & transport logistics platform provider, yet another of the Egyptian government’s strategic public-private partnership (PPP) realization efforts. MTS is engaged in a 20-year contract to launch a national platform that covers Egyptian airports, seaports, land ports, and free zones in compliance with international standards and best practices. The target platform relies on information communication technology (ICT) solutions and systems integration as a basis to provide electronic services, speedy automated procedures, and services of real business value to the trade community in a unified manner. 

The company aims at providing unified quality data in a complete, accurate, and timely manner to the designated governmental authorities in support of their decision support processes.

The CargoX Platform

The CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT) is based on neutral, public Ethereum blockchain technology and powers the fast, cost-effective, secure, immutable, tamper-proof, auditable, and confidential transfer of documents of title transfer and registration of original digital documents on the blockchain. The platform can be used as a stand-alone online service or in a single-window customs system integrated via API.

In 2020 CargoX was approved by the International Group of Protection & Indemnity Clubs (IGP&I), the global federation of 13 insurance associations which include 22 of the world’s largest 25 reinsurers (in 2019) that provide liability coverage for carriers, covering approximately 90% of the world’s maritime tonnage.

CargoX is one of the selected proof of concept providers for the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA) e-FIATA Bill of Lading (2021), an observer at the Digital Transport and Logistics Forum (DTLF), an initiative forum to the Directorate-General of the European Commission for Mobility and Transport. It is further a member of the International Association of Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA) and a contributor to the World Economic Forum Blockchain Toolkit.

The CargoX Platform was voted the Most Innovative Solution 2019 and best Blockchain Innovation of the Year 2019 at the Transport & Logistics Middle East (TLME) Excellence Awards. The company won the IRU World Congress Startup Competition 2018, was shortlisted at the Financial Times/RSG 2018 Intelligent Business Awards, made the finals at the SXSW Pitch 2019 finalist, and took home the #DataccioConnect Blockchain Innovation Award 2018. 

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