The Background

The IATA Cargo Agency program has operated for many decades without significant alterations, despite compelling changes in the business relationship between cargo agents and airlines. Today, the traditional IATA Cargo Agent has transitioned from being a selling-agent of the airline to being a purchasing-customer.

In an effort to modernize the current Agency program, FIATA , the International Federation of Freight Forwarders' Association, representing international freight forwarders and logistics providers, and IATA, representing airlines, have joined forces.

The Concept

The objective of this cooperation is to review, refine, and re-engineer the airline conference based program to one which would be jointly managed by airlines and forwarders. Major steps have been made and this collaboration has resulted in the development of a new joint IATA-FIATA Air Cargo Program, and significant strides in redefining airline and forwarder responsibilities.

The new proposed governance mechanism establishes an IATA-FIATA Governance Board, which recognizes the role played by forwarders in today's marketplace as customers of the airlines and increases consultations at all levels to achieve common air cargo goals, which are objectives for both FIATA and IATA.

Where we are at

The high-level deliberations have now concluded and concepts agreed. More specific details of the program procedures are being finalized.

Key MilestonesWhenStatus
Secure endorsement of IFACP package by Cargo Agency ConferenceMar-15Completed
Complete the legal reviewsFeb-16Completed
IATA and FIATA signed the I ATA-FIATA Cooperation AgreementOct-16Completed
Finalize the rules for the new programDec-16Completed
Setup the new Governance Board and approve program rules Jan-17Completed
Kick off the implementation of IFACP in pilot country - CanadaStarted Aug-17On hold*
Kick off the phased roll-out worldwide, replacing current IATA Agency-Intermediary ProgramsTBD by IFGBOn hold

*The pilot roll out in Canada raised some questions among the constituencies FIATA and IATA (related to liability, commercial relationship and the variety of roles of the Forwarders in the supply chain). A lot of positive progress is being made, but work is still in progress and there are on-going discussions to bring clarity to these questions for the industry.