Saturday, October 24, 2009

UK Freight Forwarders Win Intra European Freight Trade Concession For Shippers

Government Concedes to BIFA that Security Data Provision Unnecessary
Shipping News Feature

UK – The British International Freight Association (BIFA) has been told by the Government’s Home Office and UK Border Agency (UKBA) that there will be major concessions to the relevant Act of Parliament which will allow the continuation of free intra European trade without the need for shippers and freight forwarding agents to provide excess freight consignment data on a routine basis.

Comments Peter Quantrill, BIFA Director General: “The implementing Order of the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality (IAN) Act 2006 could have imposed a new routine reporting requirement relating to the provision of consignment data for national security purposes regarding intra-EU movements. This would have had an adverse impact on British business and resulted in the diversion of transit and transhipment cargo away from British ports and airports. Effectively it would have meant the return of border controls for EU traffic and a rolling back of the Single Market.

“BIFA has been seeking to limit the impact on its members, of the requirements to provide freight information, over and above what is currently required for customs purposes. Now that that the Home Office has confirmed that agreed consignment data will not be sought and collected as a matter of course, we would appear to have achieved our goal.”

Industry representatives have been negotiating the situation since 2005, before the inception of powers provided for in Section 33 of the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality (Ian) Act 2006.