This year, blockchain testing programs will evolve from pilot tests to real-world platforms, and supply chain management is among the industries the distributed ledger technology is set to disrupt.

On Tuesday, Maersk and IBM announced a joint venture to deploy a blockchain-based electronic shipping system that will digitize supply chains and track international cargo in real time.

The new platform could save the global shipping industry billions of dollars a year by replacing the current EDI- and paper-based system, which can leave containers in receiving yards for weeks.

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