Presently, many shipping supply chains are bogged down by a morass of paperwork shuffled between a glut of middlemen, Wieck says. Documentation, which when lost or delayed causes perishable goods lying in wait to spoil, can end up costing as much as a fifth of the total expense of physical transportation.

According to a 2013 study by the World Economic Forum, reducing the friction around information-sharing and border administration when it comes to international trade “could increase GDP by nearly 5% and trade by 15%”—a boost that amounts to trillions of dollars.

Source: Shipping: IBM, Maersk Are Creating a New Blockchain Company | Fortune, Robert Hackett, January 16, 2018