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The International Air Transport Association's e-freight initiative aims to "take the paper out of air cargo" supply chain operations and replace it with electronic messaging, which is more accurate, more reliable, and less expensive. Though it was initiated by IATA, e-freight has gained industry-wide support, including that of carriers, freight forwarders, ground handlers, shippers, and customs brokerss and authorities.
As of December 2011, e-freight was live in 42 locations and 109 airports, and 20 standards have been developed. Priorities for 2012 include elevating e-freight as an industry priority via the Global Air Cargo Advisory Group (GACAG), whose members, including IATA, will have to agree on their roles within the overall e-freight scheme. IATA will continue to focus on expanding the e-freight network, with a special emphasis on the BRIC countries.
IATA estimates $4.9 billion in annual savings for the industry as a result moving to electronic messages - coming from reduced shipment times and more accurate data due to the electronic exchange of information.
- "e-freight Fundamentals". Documents. International Air Transport Association. March 2012. Retrieved 16 August 2012.