Air Cargo Security


Is moving cargo by air to the EU your business?

In August 2011, the EU adopted regulations for the security of incoming air cargo and mail. The rules require air carriers flying cargo and mail into the EU (and Norway, Iceland and Switzerland) from non-EU countries to ensure certain minimum standards of security are met prior to loading cargo and mail aboard aircraft bound for the EU.

The EU regulations require any air carrier transporting cargo or mail to the EU to be designated as an ‘Air Cargo or Mail Carrier operating into the Union from a Third Country Airport’ (ACC3). If an ACC3 wishes to have any part of their cargo security controls applied by business partners outside of the EU, such as ground handling agents or screening companies, then unless the business partners form part of the ACC3’s own cargo security programme these entities will also have to undergo independent validation to obtain the status of RA3 (Regulated Agents).

The regulations also require that ACC3s and RA3s undergo on-site or desk-top validations of their cargo operations at the relevant non-EU airports. The validations, which are valid for up to 3 years (RA3s) or 5 years (ACC3s), must be undertaken by an Independent Aviation Security Validator, accredited by an EU regulator.