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North Ireland BorderLONDON: October 16, 2019. A consortium of business leaders, haulage experts and technology engineers, led by a senior military expert, has been formed to enable a frictionless border between Northern Ireland and The Republic of Ireland.

Termed Project ELAND, the consortium will introduce secure transit technologies with blockchain tracking to enable the free movement of goods across the border. This will negate the need for either the inclusion of Northern Ireland in the EU customs union or the re-imposition of a hard border on the island of Ireland.

Project ELAND will use industry-standard technologies to build a totally secure freight transit system based on digital locking containers, GPS routing records, automated certification and anti-tampering enforcement with every detail recorded in a blockchain time-series database.

“We are building a mobile security technology that will enable frictionless cross border trading through seamless digital borders,” explains Charles Le Gallais, founder and CEO of ELAND. “In essence, it is a bonded warehouse on wheels and cuts the gordian knot of how the UK can both leave the EU and maintain the guarantees set out in the Good Friday Agreement. We are enabling the seamless movement of goods across borders to continue without the need for an Irish backstop.”

The system operates at three levels of security: first securing the goods to be transported in the blockchain database; then securing the pallet or shipment box; finally securing the container or truck trailer used to transport the goods. Each level of security is tracked through the blockchain ledger against GPS and time data.

The ELAND border solution is the first pragmatic and workable approach to the Irish border issue; every component of the ELAND solution is proven technology today and the integrated solution will be demonstrable within three months and could be fully implemented within one year.  The lack of detailed technology solutions to the Irish border issue was highlighted by the Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe during an interview on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme on September 16th 2019 when, in reply to a question on alternative border arrangements and the use of technology, he replied: “We have yet to see examples of how they would work.”

In operation, Project ELAND will secure, track and monitor the 180,000 trucks that cross the internal island of Ireland border each month. Its operation can also be extended to other UK borders including shipping to France, Belgium, The Netherlands and Spain. In these cases, border infrastructure already exists, but ELAND will facilitate the continued use of ‘Green Lanes’ where trucks can board with minimal hindrance, especially when carrying perishable goods.

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