Director of Media and Communications at EMIR Research, Jamari Mokhtar has emphasised that Minister of Science, Technology, and Innovation (MOSTI) Minister, Khairy Jamaluddin’s move to use blockchain technology to track the logistics and supply chain of the Covid-19 vaccines is an excellent idea.
Blockchain, referred to as Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), makes the history of any digital asset unalterable and transparent with decentralisation and cryptographic hashing.
“A simple analogy for understanding blockchain technology is a Google Doc. When we create a document and share it with a group of people, the document is distributed instead of copied or transferred.
This creates a decentralised distribution chain that gives everyone access to the document at the same time. No one is locked out awaiting changes from another party, while all modifications to the doc are being recorded in real-time, making changes completely transparent,” Jamari explained.
He added that the whole point of using a blockchain is to let in particular people who do not trust one another, share valuable data in a secure, tamper proof way.
Referring to the cartel meat scandal, an important lesson of the meat scandal is the cartel’s activities all these years were only unmasked once blockchain technology was deployed via the TradeLens platform.
Additionally, the blockchain also allows all logistic activities including trucking, warehousing, shipping, and freight forwarding at both domestic and global levels to be integrated which improves the sharing of data-rich information through a single platform.
Hence, it promotes trust among trading partners as the record of all transactions is shared within the network and permissioned parties can access the data in real-time, making it possible for the Royal Malaysian Customs Department to have permissioned visibility into supply chain activities with verified, highly trusted and near real-time data.
Currently, MOSTI is exploring ways to utilise blockchain technologies in not just vaccines and meat supplies but also in other areas as well.
“It is early days in its rollout, but we are confident that this technology, as well as strong data integration, analytics and visualisation techniques will enable us to monitor progress made and make robust decisions along the way.
“At MOSTI, we are also exploring the possible use of blockchain technology for customs clearance and improving reliability of our halal meat supply chain,” Khairy said.