EU policy has long assessed the dangers posed by airfreight and passengers in two separate ways. Whilst the Commission itself describes the need for "improved passenger screening methods in order to ensure high security levels with minimum hassle", it has for a long period advocated consideration of a risk-based approach to the security of cargo originating outside the EU. Recently this policy has been intensified with the intent of standardizing protection measures no matter where goods emanate from.
Now, after a series of meetings to prepare for the launch of new obligatory EU regulations on air cargo security which come into force on 1 July 2014, the International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) says that although it welcomes developments so far, much work remains to be done. In fact, TIACA is concerned that the new regulations fall outside industry goals of a common, unified approach to global security standards.
Essentially under the new rules, any carrier bringing in shipments to the EU and EFTA trade areas from an airport outside those zones must ensure that an EU aviation security validation of their cargo (or mail) operations has been carried out, at each such airport, by an independent expert. Only when the carrier has satisfied the authorities by way of this independent validation that their processes within the non-EU airport are up to the mark will they be granted the status of "Air Cargo or Mail Carrier operating into the Union from a Third Country Airport" (ACC3).
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