Even though the UK and EU27 have yet to start negotiations on an agreement for their future post-Brexit trading relationship, the UK government on Tuesday aimed to reassure the vast air cargo industry and said it intends to recognize EU cargo security rules when the so-called transition period terminates at yearend and new rules take effect on January 1, 2021.
“Cargo will be able to fly from the UK to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein without a security designation, in the same way as it does now,” the UK Department for Transport (DfT) stated. It pointed out that Brussels intends to recognize the UK aviation security regime and include the former member state in its One Stop Security system so that cargo screened in the UK will not have to undergo additional security checks on arrival in the EU.
Airlines from the rest of the world that fly air cargo or mail into the EU via the UK will need to continue complying with the bloc’s ACC3 program and must have the special security designation. ACC3 designation is mandatory, since July 2014, for each non-EU airport from which an air carrier flies air cargo or mail to or through the EU.
The DfT said it will establish a UK-only inbound cargo scheme to ensure no effect on security standards. The new UK scheme will mirror the EU scheme and grant security designations starting in January “to allow all cargo to continue to ship smoothly while maintaining existing security standards,” it stressed.
The UK exited the EU on January 31, but the UK will continue to apply EU law—even as it enjoys no representation in EU institutions—during a transition period that lasts until the end of 2020 while it tries to establish a new partnership with the bloc. Ministers of the EU27 on Tuesday adopted a 46-page mandate that chief negotiator Michel Barnier will follow in the negotiations. The UK plans to publish its own mandate on Thursday. Negotiations start on March 2.