US, EU mutually recognize each other’s air cargo security regimes

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Published: June 1, 2012

The US, the European Union (EU) and Switzerland have agreed to mutually recognize each other’s air cargo security procedures and rules, a move aimed at streamlining duplicative screening practices and other time-consuming security protocols on transatlantic airfreight lanes ( ATW Daily News, March 16, 2011 ).

“Air cargo traffic between the EU and the US amounts to over a million tons a year traveling each way across the Atlantic, which is over 20% of all outbound air cargo from the EU [according to 2010 figures] ,” the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and European Commission (EC) noted in a joint statement.

TSA administrator John Pistole said the agreement “will ease the burden on industry and allow for the free movement of goods and commerce between our nations. It will also strengthen security by ensuring that we share information and work together towards our common interests.”

EC VP-transport Siim Kallas added that through “mutual recognition of our comprehensive and solid regulatory frameworks we create significant savings and simplification for our freight transport industry while maintaining a high standard of security.”

The mutual recognition is effective immediately. “As a consequence of this … private industry can move cargo though the 27 EU member states, the US and Switzerland while following a single set of security rules,” TSA and the EC stated. “The close cooperation between the European Commission and the TSA over the last few months permitted the air cargo security regimes in place in the EU and the US to be compared in detail and to be confirmed as ensuring an equivalent, high level of security.”

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