COVID-19 Technical Group, a project created by ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization), aims to facilitate the flow of air cargo in the world, TIACA (The International Air Cargo Association) announced. Experts from WHO, IATA, ACI, and GEA are joining forces to elaborate a plan that will help to fight COVID-19 and its effects.
The State Letter, sent by IACO to all Member States on 18th of March, has described the importance of the air cargo and demanded "the facilitation of entry, departure, and transit of aircraft engaged in relief flights and to implement all measures to facilitate the receipt of aid, including overflight and landing rights, necessary privileges and immunities for relief units.
Vladimir Zubkov, Secretary-General of TIACA, declared: "It's a very resolute message to the States and we are seeing some initial results. It's a collective effort and we are working tirelessly to ensure that the ICAO Member States commit to taking action. On Monday, for instance, I received a letter from the Russian authorities that specifically stated that flight crews were exempt from the 14-day quarantine."
Chairman of TIACA, Steven Polmans, mentioned: "To expand the coverage, we invited both TIACA members and those who are not, to contribute by specifying their problems, and received already input from airlines, airports and logistics companies. It will be used in working with our international partners."
Even though there are still things to be done, many countries have taken measures to issue exemptions for crew members of cargo flights from quarantine and allow all-cargo flights to continue to operate.
Among the issues that need to be dealt with, indicated by TIACA, are also the following:
-The existing structure of commercial rights within bilateral and multilateral agreements imposes restrictions on the necessity for a quick change in air routes: the need to allow airlines to quickly change the geography of the flights depending on the urgency of deliveries.
-Slots at airports remain a problem: airports must release slots for cargo operations.
-Some countries do not allow the transit of certain goods through their territories.
ICAO Technical Group and TIACA have joined forces in this global crisis, to generate solutions and provide necessary information to all stakeholders.
Source: Forwarder Magazine
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