Air Cargo Management

ICAO and WCO revise air cargo security guidance

cargo loading

To further assist air transport regulators and operators in their mitigation of security threats associated with air cargo activities, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the World Customs Organization (WCO) have released a revised supply chain and secure mail brochure.

The third edition of Moving Air Cargo Globally draws on input from a wide range of stakeholders, including both regulators and industry, and recognises the critical role international supply chains play as catalysts for sustainable development at national, regional, and global levels, underscoring the broader need to avoid security-related disruptions to these activities.

The complex air cargo and mail operating environments involve a multiplicity of entities and might add to the day-to-day operational difficulties of implementing security measures and countering threats.

The brochure’s advice describes the roles and responsibilities of these various entities, and highlights how they can work together effectively to secure air cargo and mail within the regulatory framework.

Juan Carlos Salazar, ICAO Secretary General, said: “Maintaining operational efficiency and commercial viability has always been at the cornerstone of ICAO’s efforts towards improving aviation security, as demonstrated by the tremendous adaptability and resilience the air cargo sector showed during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Moving Air Cargo Globally will help to support the implementation of robust and harmonised standards worldwide, while fostering the improved air transport connectivity which is so critical to the future sustainability of societies and economies everywhere.”

Previous attacks on civil aviation committed or attempted by concealing improvised explosive or incendiary devices in consignments has demonstrated that it is essential to remain vigilant and apply measures that secure air cargo and mail, with vulnerabilities potentially providing terrorists and criminals with a route of attack. ICAO and WCO state that these threats remain credible today and measures still need to be sustainably implemented by all stakeholders.

The guidance also highlights the increasing importance of digitalising cargo processes to make them better fit for purpose in modern multimodal supply chains, and more agile, responsive, and secure in the face of new opportunities and threats. It focuses on measures around high-risk cargo and screening, including preventive security measures directed at staff members to mitigate the threats posed by insiders.

The third edition of the Moving Air Cargo Globally brochure can be accessed here.

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