Origin – The Need for Efficient and Secure Trade
GCEL’s origin began with the need to resolve growing trade inefficiencies within the Global Logistics Industry (GLI) that accumulated after years of globalization spawned by the advent of trade containerization. The growing fragmentation between global trading parties contributed to higher landed import-export costs thus hindering tangible economic growth in high, mid and low-income countries alike.
A Call to Action – the Secure Cargo Anti-Terrorism Coalition
Following the tragic events of 9/11 and in response to the urgent need for efficient and secure trade, Axiolog, a Michigan, USA company, founded the Secure Cargo Anti-Terrorism Coalition (SCAC) in 2003. SCAC’s primary objective was to demonstrate the ability to achieve new levels of trade efficiency and security through the deployment of advanced open source information technology that has led to the formulation of the Multi-Dimensional Digital Economy Application System (MDDEAS). This advanced technology was successfully “Proven in Practice” by SCAC over one of the world’s busiest border crossings handling more than USD 110 billion in annual shipments between Ontario, Canada and Michigan, USA.
The response to the successful results was overwhelmingly positive leading to favorable endorsements from a broad range of public and private sector leaders worldwide. Following Capt. Salloum’s expert testimony to a U.S. Congressional Select Committee on Homeland Security, the principle tenets of the technology influenced 7 of 10 elements included within Presidential Directives – National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD #41 and Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD) #13.
The Formation of GCEL
While the positive SCAC results were favorably received, it highlighted the following basic dilemma:
Who will provide the solution to effect efficient and secure trade thereby stimulating economic development and achieve the objectives of high, mid and low income countries?
Governments and large private organizations are generally expected to provide required solutions to our problems. While governments are responsible to resolve problems facing their countries, they are not solution providers in the market place. Large technology solution providers cannot be allowed to provide a global solution because of geo-political concerns, their inability to ensure a rapid global deployment and concerns of monopolistic power over an industry so vital to any country.
In addition, since shipments cross multiple organizations and countries, it is necessary to realize that a truly global solution cannot be tailored to an organization, country or region – it must be comprehensive and uniform from shelf-to-shelf. Therefore, only a true global public private partnership (PPP) can resolve the issues affecting global trade.
Consequently, GCEL was created as a Public Private Partnership (PPP) in 2005 by government and private sector leaders from three Midwestern states – Michigan, Illinois and Nebraska. They represented the interests of the manufacturing, agriculture and material handling industries. Due to rapidly expanding international recognition, GCEL was legally established in Switzerland during 2006.
Over subsequent years GCEL has further broadened its PPP wherein its members and supporters now include pan regional organizations that represent more than 150 countries, 26 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Inter-Governmental Organizations (IGOs) as well as the world’s most prominent service industry firms, all of which are committed to empowering the Digital Economy as the means to grow the real economy.
GCEL is organized under the laws of Switzerland with regional headquarters in Asia, MEA, Europe and the Americas.