By Caribbean News Global
GENEVA, Switzerland — International Air Transport Association (IATA) welcomed European Commission (EC) efforts to keep air cargo flowing with accompanying guidelines on facilitating air cargo operations, said, “ the EC has understood the industry’s challenges and provided comprehensive and practical guidance to ensure that permissions to operate are quickly granted and that aircrew are able to operate efficiently with exemptions from quarantine measures.”
IATA represents some 290 airlines comprising 82 percent of global air traffic said ensuring smooth air cargo shipments is crucial. With the evaporation of passenger demand and cancellation of passenger flights, vital air cargo capacity has disappeared.
“Airlines are taking all measures to meet the remaining cargo demand, unfortunately, airlines faced bottlenecks in getting appropriate permissions and crewing cargo flights amid quarantine restrictions. The result was, delays to shipments when time is of the essence to fight the COVID-19 outbreak and keep global supply chains functioning,” IATA said in a statement.
“We are in an emergency and the European Commission has responded with speed and clarity. European Union (EU) member states need to act quickly to ensure that the guidance is followed so that air cargo, including vital shipments of medicines and medical equipment, gets to where it needs to be. Other governments should follow the EC’s example and implement similar measures so that we can unblock the global air cargo networks on which we all depend,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and chief executive officer.