Brussels-based association Airlines for Europe (A4E) has called on European Union policymakers for regulatory support of its members – including Air France-KLM, Cargolux, Finnair, International Airlines Group (IAG) and Lufthansa Group – with the release of its “A4E Air Cargo Policy Manifesto.” The manifesto outlines how EU policymakers can streamline regulations and implement them at a national level in support of European air cargo carriers’ efforts to improve efficiency, security, sustainability and digitization of their operations amid growing international competition in cargo.
Some main points A4E advocates for in the document include:
- Aligning standards and practices between EU Member states related to ACC3, or air cargo and mail carriers operating into the EU from a third country;
- Developing a list of recognized security technologies and methods;
- Adopting the electronic freight transport information regulations;
- Investing in carbon-reduction projects to support net-zero carbon emissions in Europe; and
- Incentivizing the production of sustainable aviation fuels.
According to A4E, although European air cargo represents only 2.6% of total European trade volumes, it ultimately accounts for nearly 30% of exports and 21% of imports in terms of value, making air cargo a crucial facet of economic activity in Europe. However, in order to compete with “fierce international competition,” cargo carriers often bear the cost of investing in innovative projects aimed at fostering sustainability and efficiency in operations, said A4E.
“To ensure air cargo’s continuous, sustainable growth over the next decades, joint efforts are needed to preserve and enhance the competitiveness of the sector for the benefit of European consumers and businesses alike,” said Lufthansa Cargo CEO Peter Gerber. “This includes the development of a regulatory framework, which focuses on seamless and efficient EU trade with the rest of the world – prioritizing security, customs and digitalization initiatives”.