Fort Vale plays major part in world’s first digitalised shipment

The first ever fully digitalised goods shipment landed in Singapore from Burnley on 24 September after the UK introduced world-leading legislation to make trading cheaper and easier for businesses.

A highlift footvalve produced by Burnley-based manufacturer Fort Vale, set off from Manchester Airport on Thursday, facilitated by UK and Singapore based tech company LogChain. For the first time ever, the shipment will be processed entirely digitally, rather than via physical customs documents.

The news comes following the UK’s digital trade agreement with Singapore, which facilitated electronic trade, as well as the introduction of the UK’s ground-breaking Electronic Trade Documents Act (ETDA) which came into force on Wednesday.

The Act made the UK the first G7 country to place electronic trade documents on the same legal footing as paper documents. It is estimated the move could generate £1.14 billion (€1.3 billion) for the UK economy over the next decade, supporting the Prime Minister’s priority of growing the economy.

Global sales and marketing director of Fort Vale Graham Blanchard said: ‘Fort Vale are extremely enthusiastic and excited by the prospect of successful digital trade transactions. As an organisation Fort Vale exports around 90% of its products worldwide.
“A significant number of our key accounts are based in Singapore and as such, the opportunity to be part of this historic moment was something not to miss.”

Minister for International Trade Nigel Huddleston said: “This is a landmark moment for the future of international trade and I am delighted the UK is leading the way in using technology to make things easier for our companies.”