August 16, 2017: The new IATA FIATA Air Cargo Programme (IFACP) launched in Canada replaces the existing Cargo Agency Programme.
The new Programme, which will be rolled out globally following the Canadian pilot will be jointly managed by forwarders and airlines as equal partners in the decision-making process.
A new IATA-FIATA Governance Board (IFGB) has been established to run the Programme, which provides a framework of industry standards that are relevant and in line with best practices and safety regulations.
Existing Cargo Agency Programme members will join IFACP with no further assessment and will continue their existing enrollment in Cargo Account Settlement Systems (CASS), which remains unchanged, under the jurisdiction of the Cargo Agency Conference.
The new IFACP Freight Forwarder Agreement shall govern the relationship between freight forwarders and air carriers participating in the Programme.
“Simplifying the governance structure reduces the administrative requirement to manage the Programme,” said Juan Antonio Rodriguez, IATA director FDS Operations.
“Given that more than 80 per cent of transactions are performed by freight forwarders acting as principals, the proposed IFACP better clarifies and validates the business through a buyer-seller relationship."
IFACP properly addresses the principal-to-principal relationship between freight forwarders and airlines, helping to clarify liability issues on cargo claims, as well as supporting members to work towards key industry goals such as e-freight adoption, he concluded.
During the roll out, current participants of the IATA Cargo Agency/Intermediary Programme will be provided with a new agreement and will automatically join IFACP and continue their existing enrollment in CASS once they have signed and returned the paperwork.
New applicants will need to submit a form and meet the defined financial and operational criteria.
“FIATA is pleased that the implementation phase is now a reality, a true testament to the hard work and sustained efforts of both Forwarders and Carriers over the past few years,” said Keshav Tanna, incoming Chairman of FIATA’s Air Freight Institute.
IATA Airline members will automatically transfer to the new Programme on the date on which IATA declares IFACP effective in any given region or country.
Canada is the first territory to pilot the new Programme, which was developed to meet the evolving needs of the air cargo industry.
“Our relatively small, well-connected airline and forwarder community makes Canada a natural for the IFACP pilot country,” said Ruth Snowden, executive director of the Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association (CIFFA).
Previously, cargo agents were “selling agents” for, and on behalf of, airlines, whereas today the clear majority of forwarders are “purchasing customers” from those airlines, and their business relationship is often as buyer and seller.