ME 'must enhance cargo security standards'
Dubai, July 6, 2011
There is an urgent need to boost the cargo security standards in the Middle East region to the same level as that of passenger security, said a recent survey conducted by International Quality & Productivity Centre (IQPC).
This is crucial especially at a time when the region is witnessing a rapid growth in both passenger traffic (with a 17 per cent jump) and air cargo traffic which surged to 30 per cent in 2010, the study added.
The security issue becomes all the more important now since the Middle East is pushing to become a global hub for air cargo, the IQPC said in its study citing industry experts.
"Previous incidents such as the Domodedovo airport suicide bombing in January this year in Russia and the air cargo bomb posted from Yemen last October demonstrate that the aviation industry is still a top target for terrorists," it added.
According to the IQPC survey, more than 70 per cent said the biggest improvements were needed to be made on cargo security in the Middle East.
The statistic underlines the gap that needs to be filled to increase cargo security standards to the same level as passenger security standards, especially since the Middle East is pushing to become a global hub for air cargo.
In a major step, leading aviation security professionals, who have worked on bolstering their security facilities, will meet in Dubai to discuss ways to improve cargo security.
The "Annual Aviation Security 2011" meeting will be held from September 18 to 21 at the Grand Millennium Hotel in Dubai.
A key figure leading these discussions is Ahmed Al Haddabi, SVP Airport Operations at Abu Dhabi Airport Company (ADAC).
Ahmed will share his experience on how ADAC upgraded their cargo security facilities to ensure that ADAC complied with the latest version of ICAO Annex 17.
The other experts who will attend the meeting include Colonel Khamis Al Marar, director of Department of Borders & Airports, Abu Dhabi Police; John Swanepoel, regional security manager, FedEx, UAE; Captain Salah Al Ameri, VP Aviation Security, Etihad; Mike Fazackerley, group security director, Manchester Airport, UK and Paul Linders, director security EMEA, Ceva Logistics, Netherlands.-TradeArabia News Service