The pledging is already well underway this week at The International Air Cargo Association’s (TIACA) 28th Air Cargo Forum (ACF) in Paris.
The inaugural day saw the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the World Customs Organization (WCO) join TIACA in a pledge to “work towards a paperless environment to ensure the industry maintains and develops its competitiveness, especially in expanding e-commerce markets.” A second deal was reached between the Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) and Cargo iQ to implement Cargo iQ’s Quality Management System (QMS) and “promote the sustainability of the air cargo supply chain.”
Both agreements have a distinctly technological bent and mirror a sector-wide push to integrate technology and visibility in the airfreight business. And with forwarders posting the sort of numbers that suggest a return to the black in the latest fiscal quarter, collectively raising the bar is a strong incentive towards visibility for actors that tend to keep their data close to the chest.
“We are living in a period of great transition for our industry, and collaboration among all members of the air cargo community has never been more important,” said Doug Brittin, Secretary General of TIACA. He stressed that the industry needed to cooperate to ensure that new legislation does not impact air cargo flows and that cargo delays, restrictions on the transport of lithium batteries, and the impact of “big data” all require a cooperative approach.
ICAO and TIACA will release a joint communique following the forum, outlining a series of initiatives aimed at improving the industry that the organizations will both promote.
The GSF-Cargo iQ MOU outlines areas where the groups will cooperate, and explores methods for the industry and shippers to improve communication. The MOU addresses the following points:
- Implementation, and use of Cargo iQ standards and processes, improving efficiency and on-time delivery.
- Sharing information and best practices aimed at improvement of the air cargo supply chain.
- Disseminating performance data of the air cargo supply chain to customers.
- Sharing details of forthcoming events where progress can be reviewed, “aiming at the industry engagement in its shipment control and process improvement.”