During last week’s meeting of the Aviation Security Advisory Committee’s (ASAC) Air Cargo Subcommittee at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), of which TIACA is Industry Chair, there was a full day of discussions among industry members and TSA officials. Talks covered a range of topics, including TSA’s role in the Air Cargo Advance Screening (ACAS) pilot. TSA is evaluating the results of the ACAS pilot thus far and hopes to meet with industry in January 2016 to discuss next steps. We have highlighted numerous aviation security considerations that should be discussed further, including transits and transfers, messaging among all ACAS participants, and mitigation protocols for situations where the foreign ACAS filer (e.g., a forwarder) is not recognized by TSA to screen cargo. We also discussed the extension of the National Cargo Security Program for Australia and the EU, and TSA continues to work on issues related to these programs. Other long-standing issues were reviewed in open and productive discussions; however, the specific details of the discussions are restricted due to their sensitive security information classification.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) held its annual East Coast Trade Symposium in Baltimore, Maryland, on November 4-5. CBP discussed many of its key initiatives, including implementation of its next generation automation system (the Automated Commercial Environment, or ACE). CBP also discussed its ongoing pilot of an air export manifest, in which CBP is seeking advance data for exports by air. The industry has been trying to clarify with CBP which data elements are necessary in advance for CBP purposes, and to explain when those data are available in an air environment. The outcome of these discussions could significantly affect the process of exporting air shipments from the United States. TIACA is participating in this process and discussing the issue in our Market Access and Trade Facilitation Subcommittee.