Digital waybill: another country says goodbye to paperwork
Greece introduces digital consignment notes, paving the way for easier and more efficient transport of goods at home and abroad.
The basis for using the electronic consignment note (e-CMR) is the protocol of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). According to the international transport association IRU, thirty-four countries have already ratified the protocol, with Greece recently joining it.
Advantages of a digital consignment note
According to IRU estimates, the costs of processing delivery notes via e-CMR are three to four times lower than the paper-based process. The electronic bill of lading has been available in Germany since April 2022 and – according to a representative survey conducted by Bitkom among over 400 logistics companies in Germany – it was well received.
Electronic freight transport information across the EU
The European Union wants to put an end to paper masses in transport logistics by sending information between businesses and authorities electronically. This applies to all transport routes and therefore includes road freight transport, maritime and inland navigation, rail freight transport and air freight.
From August 2024, the “eFTI EU 2020/1056 Regulation” (eFTI stands for Electronic Freight Transport Information), which was approved by the European Parliament in July 2020, is to be implemented across Europe.
The German Forwarding and Logistics Association (DSLV) has supported the Commission’s proposal for a regulation from the outset because “the proposed EU uniform rules ensure efficiency gains and a strengthening of the internal market.”
From August 2024 at the latest, EU Member State authorities must be able to receive legally required transport information electronically. According to DSLV, the participation of transport companies in electronic procedures is voluntary. However, the association recommends “early cooperation with the authorities on electronic data transfer.”