( M. Mustafa Khan )
IATA Country Manager Pakistan
In an effort to create a secure and safe supply chain environment, Pakistan Customs is working closely with the international organizations such as World Customs Organization (WCO) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA). As a result of this cooperation, Pakistan Customs and IATA have agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate and facilitate the implementation of advance passenger and cargo manifest initiatives in Pakistan.
The IATA Cargo-XML messaging standard has emerged as the preferred standard for the electronic exchange of information between airlines and air cargo stakeholders including shippers, freight forwarders, ground-handling agents and regulators, as well as Customs and Security agencies. This standard is multimodal, cross-border, based on the UN Centre for Trade Facilitation and e-Business (UN/CEFACT) and aligned with WCO standards.
The implementation of advance Cargo Information aims to:
- Facilitate cargo business processes
- Expedite the expansion of e-cargo in general and e-AWB in particular
- Fulfill customs requirements for Advance Cargo Information (ACI) filing
- Comply with security regulations like e-Consignment Security Declaration (e-CSD)
Keeping with the WCO Standards to Secure and Facilitate Global Trade (SAFE) Framework, a number of Customs authorities are considering adopting IATA Cargo-XML message standards; Pakistan Customs will be amongst the first to go live, as a result of the strong cooperation between the Pakistan Customs, IATA and airlines operating in Pakistan. Effective December 2015, Pakistan Customs will start pilot testing to implement the advance information on cargo movement using the IATA Cargo-XML messages. The purpose of the project is to facilitate management of customs operations, real-time risk management and facilitation of the interchange of information amongst the various air cargo Stakeholders that participate in world trade.
The endorsement of IATA standard messages by a national administration confirms the perception increasingly shared among both private and public sectors that the best solution to ensure the security of the international supply chain and to promote trade facilitation is through an harmonized approach which can result from a tight and constant cooperation between industry representatives and government authorities.