Russian tit-for-tat security plan sparks cost fears

THE COST of transporting goods by air to Russia will rise, if that nation introduces its own security rules for airfreight shipments from Europe, writes Thelma Etim, deputy editor.
The European Shippers Council (ESC) has branded the Russian move as tit-for-tat and says it will not only threaten the air cargo industry’s fragile recovery but will also create a huge administrative burden – causing prices to rise.
“It will make air transportation to Russia more expensive and this is something our industry cannot have right now when we are all still vulnerable," argues Joost Van Doesburg, the ESC’s policy advisor.
“It will make transporting goods to Russia in general more expensive. For example, millions of cut-flowers are shipped from the Netherlands into Russia. New extra security measures will only make these items more expensive on the Russian market and therefore demand for them will decrease.”
The Russian move follows an impasse over the European Union’s ACC3 (air cargo or mail carrier operating into the European Union from a third-country airport) regime, which has branded Russian air cargo security standards as non-approved.
A statement posted on the Federal Air Transport Agency of Russia website, confirms plans ‘to develop and adopt’ its own regulation similar to ACC3.
Van Doesburg says such a development will be detrimental to Euro-Russian trade.
“Russia is an important trade partner for Europe. Airlines, handlers, shippers etc will all need to invest in these specific Russian measures.  
“Introducing such measures will damage Russia’s relationship with the EU and that is not good for their economy, or Europe’s,” he warns.
The ACC3 regulations came into force from July.
The EU has three classifications for countries: green warrants no special requirements, ACC3 rules apply for those in the white category, whilst additional security measures are required from those placed on the red list.

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