The International Air Transport Association (Iata) has called on governments to step up to keep global supply chains open.
“We are still seeing examples of cargo flights filled with life-saving medical supplies and equipment grounded due to cumbersome and bureaucratic processes to secure slots and operating permits. These delays are endangering lives. All governments need to step up to keep global supply chains open,” said Alexandre de Juniac, Iata’s director general and CEO.
He wants to see governments introducing fast track procedures for overflight and landing permits for cargo operations, particularly in key manufacturing hubs in Asia -- China, Korea and Japan -- in response to the increased number of cargo charters replacing withdrawn passenger operations.
He has also called for support for temporary traffic rights for cargo operations where restrictions may apply and the removal of economic impediments, such as overflight charges, parking fees, and slot restrictions to support air cargo operations during these unprecedented times.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has reiterated the importance of air cargo in the fight to slow the spread of Covid-19.
“We call on airline companies and governments to join the global effort to ensure dedicated freight capacity continues to operate on previously high-volume passenger routes that are now closed down,” said Paul Molinaro, chief, operations support and logistics, WHO.