CBP adopts XML messaging standard for air cargo

The new data format will make electronic communication between CBP’s Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) system, airlines and other air cargo stakeholders simpler and more efficient, IATA said. "Airlines, freight-forwarders, shippers and border agencies share the common goals of simplifying processes, enhancing efficiency and maximizing safety and security. The key to achieving this is industry collaboration and standardization on a global scale," Nick Careen, IATA senior vice president for airport, passenger, cargo and security, said in a statement. "Having support for Cargo-XML from CBP, one of the world’s largest federal law enforcement agencies, will positively contribute towards the industry achieving its objective - the global adoption of a standard air cargo messaging system." CBP’s utilization of the new standards, developed from international regulations, is due to begin within the next few months. CBP is working to reduce the considerable number of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) message formats currently supported to process international import, export cargo and cargo release information. IATA is assisting in this effort by permitting CBP to publish the minimal data file specifications for the IATA Cargo-XML messages. By adopting a common messaging standard for all air cargo shipments, the industry can be confident that information being provided to CBP is technically correct, IATA said. The new messaging standard will also make it easier for CBP agents to identify freight which doesn’t comply with health, safety, trade or security requirements, IATA added.