Lufthansa Cargo calls for faster shipper accreditation to meet EU deadline

2012 03 09

LUFTHANSA Cargo has called for swifter implementation of the certified shipper approval process in Germany.

Addressing 250 delegates from the logistic industry at the fifth Security Conference in Frankfurt, board member for operations, Karl-Rudolf Rupprecht said: "With only 13 months to go until EU Directive 185 goes into force, fewer than one per cent of shippers in Germany have been accredited. This shows a need for action. All must take steps to speed up the approval process."

Dr Rupprecht said his airline is making thorough preparations for April 2013 so as to be able to continue to offer its customers security processes.

One of the main topics under discussion was the inadequate level of harmonisation of international security standards. Dr Rupprecht said mutual recognition of EU directives and US regulations, particularly as regards transatlantic traffic, was long overdue.

"It is neither comprehensible nor acceptable," he added, "that the US authorities recognise security measures for air cargo from France or Switzerland, say, but do not recognise the virtually identical measures that apply in Germany. This results in additional checks on all departures from Germany to the USA.

"Insufficient harmonisation was thus creating inefficiencies, lengthy processes and high costs, and did not result in any security gains, Dr Rupprecht said. "In the past few years, Lufthansa Cargo's security costs have increased more than tenfold. And that trend looks set to continue."

However, the airline manager also pointed out that, in spite of the scope for improvement with regards processes and harmonisation, security levels in the industry were recognised as being high, and the measures in place ensured a high degree of security for airfreight traffic.

Harald Zielinski, head of security and environmental management, said the airline's security conference had a key role to play in this process. "Dialogue between politicians, the authorities and the logistics companies is crucial if we want to further improve security regulations and at the same time ensure smooth implementation as well as competitive processes and costs. With our fifth Security Conference, we have once again brought together top representatives from all the areas involved."

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

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