In Hong Kong, the enhancement of international standards on air cargo security announced by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) commenced on January 1. 2020 and, the fourth and final stage starts on March 1, 2021, for which U-Freight is fully prepared.
Simon Wong, UFL’s chief executive officer said: “The final phase demands that all consignors of air cargo must be approved by the appropriate authority as a “validated” Known Consignor (KC), with any consignee not validated becoming an “unknown consignor” with all their cargo subject to 100% security screening prior to being loaded on to a commercial aircraft, to meet the ICAO deadline of 100% screening of non-known consignee cargo by June 30th 2021.”
In Hong Kong, since January 2020, a transitional arrangement has been set up that has required the RACSF to gradually increase the percentage of air cargo being screened.
Over two years ago, the U-Freight Group installed an X-ray machine at its Golden Bear Industrial Centre in Hong Kong, giving staff adequate time to gain experience in the scanning process, as well as helping to identify prohibited/suspect products inside the ever-increasing number of e-commerce parcels it handles.
A second enhanced X-ray machine was installed in July 2019, which can scan consignments up to pallet size. The company modified its export operations warehouse to accommodate the existing X-ray machine, as well as the newly purchased one.
Wong adds: “The U-Freight Group fully supports the ICAO aviation security requirements and has worked closely with CAD, Hong Kong Airport Authority, Cargo Terminal Operator and HAFFA in making the necessary preparations to make sure that we enhance our air cargo security regime to meet international aviation security requirements.
“The establishment of off-airport screening facilities in Hong Kong enables air cargoes to be screened at the existing warehouses or similar premises of the air cargo industry before such cargoes are transported to the airport for loading onto aircraft.
“We were very keen to capitalise on this opportunity, and were very pleased to become one of the first freight forwarders and logistics companies to have been accredited by CAD, which enabled us to prepare to play our part in the new ICAO regime.”