IATA has signaled it will work "even more closely" with the air cargo industry as it deals with ever-increasing security and safety needs, IATA CEO and DG Tony Tyler told the organization's World Cargo Symposium in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Tyler urged the industry to work together and cooperate with governments on industry solutions for cargo security. They must be multi-layered while involving the entire value chain, he said. Three areas of focus are providing data for risk management, securing the supply chain upstream and using the most recent technology.

On risk management, Tyler said work on the US Air Cargo Advanced Screening pilot project and a jointly developed e-consignment security declaration is being put forward as recommended practice within ICAO Annex 17 regulations. "This will help facilitate a consistent provision of data to regulators for risk management purposes," he said.

He said the IATA Secure Freight pilot initiative keeps cargo "sterile" until loaded. Kenya, Mexico, Chile, South Africa, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates are to start their own programs with China and Brazil also showing interest, he added.

One reason for the importance of these initiatives is the impact they can have on business, although he also said IATA will continue to manage the Cargo Account Settlement Systems and enhance customer services levels as part of its plans to boost the air cargo business. It is also planning to modernize the cargo agency program. 

A team within IATA has been tasked to collaborate with the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Assn. (FIATA) to bring proposals to the IATA board of governors by year-end.