Blockchain and data: Powerful together for automotive industry

The national government think tank for the automotive industry, the Malaysia Automotive Institute (MAI), has signed an MoA (Memorandum of Agreement) with Crypto Valley Malaysia (CVM), to kickstart blockchain technology applications for the local automotive industry.

This is in line with the national policy for Industry 4.0 which was launched by our Prime Minister last October, whereby blockchain was identified as one of the enablers of Industry 4.0.

During his welcome address, MAI CEO, Dato’ Madani Sahari pointed out that in the local automotive industry, there is yet to be any initiative to apply blockchain technology and that the MoA signing between MAI and CVM is an important milestone.

Work on the four blockchain projects which he introduced to the local automotive ecosystem during the MoA signing, would start immediately but “any output would be visible in 2019.”

Lucky number 4

MAI has identified four use cases in the local industry for blockchain technology. For one, the reputation economy around local automotive after-sales and services can be based on blockchain; it validates the identity of users who review products and services, and ensures that data is encrypted and secured.

Commercial vehicles can also be outfitted with onboard diagnostics that measure key metrics of a driver’s behaviour in real-time.  These vehicles will each have unique digital profiling and enhanced carbon footprint calculations will be tagged to each vehicle via blockchain.

Dato’ Madani had said, “Despite using all manner of green technologies, it is still possible to pollute the environment via the way we use our cars. Blockchain can help the fleet operations industry, gauge carbon emissions, and even reward drivers who drive in a way that minimises carbon footprint.”

Ensuring the originality of products is already a very popular blockchain use case, and in MAI’s case this will be applied to ensuring proper distribution of original spare automotive parts.

Last but not least, is alternative e-hailing services. The CEO explained that Grab is a common platform and anyone can be a Grab driver if they pay fees to be a part of its platform. “But you can be your own Grab driver without having to pay oppressional fees to maintain the system!”

Data is oil

Under the Industry 4.0 national policy, besides the evaluation phase to assess maturity and readiness of pre-selected SMEs, there would also be intervention measures to bring their processes to Industry 4.0 level.

Dato’ Madani opined that data is very key in the Industry 4.0 endeavour and that there is data everywhere. “Industry 4.0 allows data throughout the supply chain to be collected and analysed for informed actions to be initiated.”

Translated to our daily living, he also opined that many daily activities can be translated into loyalty points and stored via blockchain technology.

Because of blockchain also, data and points can be safely transferred from one platform to another so that more interesting and more meaningful events can happen, for example, enabling rewards in exchange for points via loyalty programmes.

“When blockchain can enable rewards for good behaviour, that can be powerful,” he pointed out.

He also welcomed any party interested to convert any activity onto a platform, to approach MAI.