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Air freight – current information

Get an overview of current topics and market events in air freight here.

As of March 1, 2023, the new customs program ICS2 will be implemented throughout the EU. This new program will require additional electronic data for risk assessment of shipments into the European market prior to loading.

Airlines transporting shipments into or through the EU will be required to submit relevant shipment data to Customs prior to loading and will not transport shipments until they are cleared by Customs. Shipments that could pose a threat to flight and aviation security will be identified and sorted out at an early stage through this new "Pre-Loading Reporting", even before they are loaded onto an aircraft bound for the EU.

Airlines are prepared and advanced implementation measures are aimed at ensuring smooth handling of your shipments. Compliance with regulatory requirements is a top priority. Implementing the new European customs regulations to enhance flight safety is therefore an operational necessity and of significant importance for all airlines.

What do you need to consider?

  • Provide the mandatory HS codes and consignee EORI (if assigned) on the shipment documents.
  • Provide meaningful and complete data, such as an accurate description of the goods.
  • The more complete the data, the lower the risk of regulatory queries.

If you have any questions about the new customs system, please contact your local sales or air freight specialist.

Further information can be found in this newsletter.

The trade union ver.di has announced a full-day warning strike at Frankfurt Airport for Friday, February 17, 2023.

Due to the strike there will be massive disruptions. Regular airport operations cannot be guaranteed. Therefore, the airport is only available for emergencies, humanitarian, military and planned government flights on this day.

Not only FRA (Frankfurt), but also MUC (Munich), STR (Stuttgart), HAM (Hamburg), DTM (Dortmund), HAJ (Hannover), and BRE (Bremen) will be striking.

It is expected that all inner-German flights will be cancelled, and carry-over effects to other regions should be expected. Exception will be aid flights to Turkey/Syria.

In connection with this year's round of collective bargaining in the public sector, the unions have announced that there will be warning strikes before the next round of negotiations.

We currently have the following information on this:

  • Concerted strikes are to be expected at all relevant airport locations in calendar week 7/2023, possibly also on different days depending on the location.
  • We will receive a more specific strike announcement before the strike day.
  • The strike is expected to last 24 hours.
  • The strike will not only affect the airport companies themselves, but all companies where collective agreements have been terminated.
  • The unions have declared their aim to bring airport operations to a complete standstill.

As soon as we have further details, we will inform you accordingly.

A strike has been called in more than 200 locations in France for 24 hours starting at 8 a.m. today. Most of the state functions (schools, kindergarten, regional trains, buses, subways, etc.) will be closed, we are also going to suffer from employees not being able to come to work. Some customers and consignees are also expected to close today.

We expect delays as city centers and economic areas may be blocked. Please keep this in mind when making inquiries.

Our colleagues will assist you with your requests.

From January 2023, a new regulation will apply in Spain, requiring importers to indicate the number of net kilos of single-use plastic in their import clearance documents. The tax is € 0.45 per net kilo of single-use plastic.

Affected by this tax is any container made with materials of any nature and that is used to contain, protect, handle, distribute and present merchandise, from raw materials to finished articles, at any stage of the manufacturing, distribution and consumption chain. All disposable items used for this same purpose are also considered containers. This concept includes only sales or primary packaging, collective or secondary packaging and transport or tertiary packaging.

The importer is obliged to declare the net number of kilos of non-reusable plastic container and therefore, ideally, it is information that should be accompanied by the documents for import clearance, such as the invoice or the packing list.

The following containers are not affected by the tax:

  • Plastic containers for sanitary products
  • Plastic containers for agricultural food products
  • Plastic containers that are made of 100 percent recycled plastic, or its proportionate part, or if they are made of chemically recycled (rPE) or renewable plastic.
  • Also, plastic containers are exempt from tax if they are intended for export to a third country, in which case the importer must apply to the tax authorities for a refund of the tax.

Please keep this in mind for future shipments and contact your local representative.

Status: January 25, 2023

Virtually all of France’s trade unions have called for a nationwide strike on Thursday January 19, 2023 to protest the pension reforms announced by the French government. Vast numbers of employees in France will be on strike, including staff working at Paris – Charles de Gaulle Airport.

To limit the impact of the strike as much as possible, we will unfortunately be forced to take the following measures on Thursday, January 19:

  • Embargo on all DGR transit CDG
  • Cancellation of a significant number of trucks to and from CDG

Our teams will do their utmost to find alternative solutions for shipments affected by the above measures.

Status: January 19, 2023

On January 15, 2023, Israeli customs will upgrade its export system.

As a result customs clearance process will be on hold for a certain time period.

  • This applies to exports from January 10 to January 15, 2023.
  • This applies to imports from January 12 to January 15, 2023.

Both export and import entries during shutdown period will be allowed on exceptional basis and pre-approval from local customs authorities.

We would like to inform you about the following Chinese New Year holidays / closing days:

  • China: January 21 – 30, 2023
  • Hong Kong: January 22 – 26, 2023
  • Taiwan: January 20 – 30, 2023

Please keep this in mind when booking your shipments.

Our colleagues are available to support you.

The recently introduced corona measures in Chengdu have been extended (see update September 1st). The airport employees are subject to a strict corona process, but overall operation is running.

Deliveries to customers and recipients are possible if the factory is open or operation continues. Many recipients have closed, so the import terminal warehouse is filled.

Before sending your goods, please check whether your recipient can accept the shipment.

Due to an upcoming national congress, an embargo on the following goods seems to have been declared with immediate effect in September and October:

  • Explosive, toxic and radioactive cargo
  • Oversized and/or heavy cargo that cannot pass the X-ray machine (export PEK)

Class 9 Dangerous Goods can continue to be shipped as usual during the period. The measures apply to import and export shipments.

Chengdu will start static management across the city at 6 pm, with residents required to stay home and unnecessary businesses suspended, to curb further expansion of an ongoing COVID-19 outbreak in the city. All citizens are advised not to leave the city if not necessary.

Please consider possible delays for your shipments to and from CTU. So far there have been no restrictions at the airport or with truck traffic.

The Cockpit Association has called for a day-long pilot strike for Friday, September 2. Changes and cancellations in the Lufthansa Cargo flight schedule are to be expected. All Lufthansa Cargo flights that are planned to land in Frankfurt on September 2 will be operated. Furthermore, the B777F rotations scheduled for September 2 will be maintained.

We are doing everything to use alternatives and rebook shipments. Despite all this, restrictions and possible delays are to be expected. We ask you to take this into account.

Area South is closed beginning on September 10, opening September 13.

Area East is closed beginning on September 10, opening September 13.

Area North is closed beginning on September 10, opening September 13.

Taiwan is closed beginning on September 9, opening September 12.

Hong Kong is closed beginning on September 12, opening September 13.

Effective September 1, 2022, all Cargolux flight operations will be switched to Zhengzhou’s new North Cargo terminal.

As a result, the last flights handled in the West Cargo terminal will be: CV9733/31AUG, CV7303/31AUG.

In Chongqing and in the province of Sichuan, industrial power consumption has been restricted by the authorities. As a result, much of the industrial production has ceased.

Due to the heat, the measure is currently scheduled until August 20 or 24 in Chongqing.

Air China Cargo has suspended all freighter connections to PEK and PVG from Frankfurt until further notice. Passenger flights will also be reduced. Some flights are rebooked to alternative airports of departure, in the light of a tense pilot and staff situation as well as the known circumstances at Fraport in Frankfurt.

From Wednesday morning, July 27 at 3:45 a.m., to Thursday morning, July 28 at 6:00 a.m., the LH ground staff will be on strike. Cancellations of passenger flights and limited freight connections to and from other German airports are to be expected. Belly capacities will only be available to a very limited extent. We will take this into account in our planning and if necessary, will book your shipments on alternative connections.

Your DB Schenker Air Freight Team in Germany

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