FIATA Advisory Body Security Matters - EU859 and Independent Validation of Forwarders
Having regard to the laudable work done in the past years by the EU level representative organisations of our sector, as well as of other sectors that are relevant for ensuring that effective security measures are implemented in the global airfreight industry;
Having regard to the inevitable global effect of any security measure adopted which is impacting on modern logistics chains, especially where logistics synchronisation patterns come into play such as in modern airfreight industry;
FIATA Members have well digested the principles of a risk based approach to security and believe that the persons move closely connected with cargo operations, in this case freight forwarders, are best positioned to provide valuable feedback to governments in the introduction of security measures and substantially enhance the potential of these measures to achieve the desired results.
In perfect alignment with the positions expressed by its EU Members and colleagues, FIATA Members strongly support the idea that the validation of Regulated Agents enshrined in EU859 legislation must be totally and uncoditionally independent. In this regard FIATA believes that inhibiting difficulties exist in ensuring the compliance of the forwarding sector to the EU Regulated Agent Programme post July 2014, as associated with its implementation outside the EU; the EU Commission should carefully consider ensuring that sufficient capacity building exists for the proposed programme to be accordingly deployed, by working alongside and in full collaboration with globally established organisations such as FIATA.
There is concern that insufficient capacity at government level might result in public/private substitutions that might fail to ensure such essential independence. Given the customer/principal relationship existing between forwarders and airlines, for the latter to undertake validation could never be considered utterly independent.
David Fielder, the Chairman of the FIATA Advisory Body Security Matters, recently voiced these concerns during his speech in Switzerland: "Simply put, there seems to be a gap between the expected capacity requirement to implement independent validation by the 2014 deadline and the human resources that will be available by then. FIATA believes that the requirement for independent validation of regulated agents and know consignors should lie with the respective regulators of the country concerned, especially where the regulated agent is already regulated by that governing Administration. Similarly, given the acceptance enshrined in EU 859 of the integrity of other National State programmes in compliance of ICAO annex 17, the EU Commission might likewise consider accepting the validation programmes of these countries on a mutual recognition basis or by ensuring that a sufficient number of independent and trained 3rd party auditors available. We cannot imaging that wise policymakers such as the EU Commission will not think of filling this gap by making a proposal in this direction, which could be accepted by our Members, considering the freight forwarding industry handles some 90% of globally flown cargo volumes". He also observed that "regulators being unable to resolve this issue could have substantial repercussions on the freight forwarding community, especially outside the EU, in particular in South East Asia, which is the main supplier of EU imports".
8 May 2012