Logo Border


Open Source software system for end-to-end digital customs clearance in foreign trade

Customs clearance in foreign trade is a highly regulated domain, shaped by national and EU specifications as well as varying requirements of the respective third countries. The processes involve many international players who often do not have a common level of knowledge about the status of the customs clearance and logistics process. Overall, customs clearance is (still) heavily paper-based and media disruptions are commonplace.


BORDER (Blockchain-based organization of relevant documents in external trade with regulatory compliance) is a blockchain-based web application. The use of blockchain technology enables the digital handling of customs-related documents, data and processes including the documentation of status and data changes – trustworthy and tamper-proof for all parties involved.


Synchronized with the physical flow of goods, the current status of the entire process can be tracked transparently.

Roles and responsibilities

Stakeholders involved, whether exporters (consignors of goods), importers (consignees of goods), logistics partners or transport companies, only see the information relevant to them.


Login with user data in the web frontend. Confirmations and documentation through scanning of a QR code (any device). Conventional editing via desktop view on laptop and computer.

In compliance with regulations

Barcode display in the predefined format for checks en route or at borders and ports with digital display of the relevant data from the export accompanying document.

No media disruptions

No need to scan, print or transfer paper-based information.


Mapping of relevant data fields for worldwide application areas and multi-language capability.


Reduction of costs, process times, labor hours, paper consumption and CO2 emissions.

Current status

End-to-end digital processing of the export accompanying document (EAD) for exports from Germany to a non-EU third country.

If a shipment is released for export, customs transmits the EAD in digital form to the declarant. It is transferred to the BORDER software system and written on the blockchain.

From this point on, the information from the EAD is available on the blockchain and can be made available to the recipient of the export shipment abroad. This means that all involved and authorized parties can transparently track the entire export process and the respective status. At the same time, each party can only view the information that is relevant to them. Individual details or even insights into export shipments of third parties remain hidden.

Future developments

Connectivity between BORDER and third-party systems (neutral adapter for connection to customs software)

EAD-PDF-recognition (data extraction and transfer to blockchain dataset).

Software-based functionality enhancement in the area of logistics and customs processing, e.g. for the integration of the EU import process (incl. transit)

Functionality enhancement in the area of blockchain application and integration, e.g. blockchain-based handling of multiple, related documents of an export/import process in the digital folder

Linking customs and logistics processes on the blockchain side with associated financial processes using smart contracts

Securing documents via integrated hash functionalities and management in the digital folder

Open Source Community

Lived community work with AEB as a conceptual design and development partner.

Would you like to participate in open source development?

All interested parties are welcome!

You can find our WG Open Customs Blockchain Community under the umbrella of the Open Logistics Foundation. This way!

That’s how it works!

How-to: BORDER

Target group: Developers

  • Golang ver. 1.19 (Breaking Changes below)
  • Node ver. 18.12.x.
  • Yarn ver. 3.2.1
  • Ignite ver. v0.25.2 via ( curl | bash)

We recommend yarn as package manager.


Submodule (Tokenmanager/Authorization) recursively clone and drag.

git clone -–recursive
  git pull -–recursive


Create .env file and paste startup configuration from readme.


Run RabbitMQ instance via a docker container.

  docker run -it --rm --name 
  rabbitmq -p 5672:5672 -p 
  15672:15672 rabbitmq


Initialize the blockchain in a new terminal.

yarn blockchain:init

Generate the typescript files.

yarn blockchain:ts-client

Run blockchain.

yarn blockchain:start


Install Dependencies.

yarn install


Start all services.

yarn all

be informed


Presentation from Feb. 21, 2023

What is BORDER? How does it work? Find all information in our slides.


Integrated modules

BORDER uses the basic components from the blockchain toolbox.

Token Manager

Storage and management of documents and corporate assets

Authorization module

Role-rights-system for controlling access, write and read permissions

Light Node Service

Interface of physical devices with the blockchain and certified transactions.

Your contact persons

Porträt Roman Koller

Roman Koller

Fraunhofer IML


Lorenz Kiebler

Fraunhofer IML


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be in contact

Prof. Dr. Michael Henke

Compound Responsibility


Maximilian Austerjost

Project Manager


Britta Scherer

Communication and Community Management