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The International Air Transport Association’s Analysis


Regulations and guidelines in the transport industry are essential since they ensure that corporations operate effectively and focus on stakeholders’ demands. Various governmental agencies implement and ensure that companies follow such policies. Some organizations go further to support or improve the performance of this sector. This paper gives a detailed background of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and its air cargo activities.

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Background and Overview

IATA’s key objectives include supporting airline operations and formulating industry standards and policies. It is an association comprised of around 290 airlines in the aviation industry (Abeyratne 12). Currently, it is headquartered in Montreal, Canada (Feng et al. 272). This agency was established in the year 1945 in Cuba (Abeyratne 16). It succeeded the International Air Traffic Association that had been formed several decades earlier in the Netherlands. The founding members of IATA were 57 airline companies from different countries. Over the years, IATA has been promoting evidence-based practices to improve safety, simplify business operations, and protect the natural environment. It provides new standards that can revolutionize air and cargo transport operations.

Air cargo is one of the critical areas that IATA takes seriously. This organization engages in continuous research and development (R&D) to understand how airlines handle, pack, and transport cargo. It provides guidelines that can ensure that different materials are transported without risks. IATA has been involved in influencing ground handling activities and operations standards. It supports a coordinated communication model among both members and non-members to maximize global harmonization (Abeyratne 62). It trains members to implement safety precautions, improve ground operations, and mitigate risks. Consequently, it has managed to present powerful standards that dictate the way materials are ferried through the air.

Key Areas

IATA focuses on specific areas related to air cargo to increase performance and meet stakeholders’ needs. The first one is that of ground handling. Different materials, items, and cargo present specific challenges before being ferried from point A to B. This agency provides suggestions and standards for packaging and wrapping specific goods. It offers directions for maintaining warehouses and presents codes for handling different materials. These measures have continued to support the aims of different airline companies (Hu et al. 2325). The second area is that of the environment. IATA has been proposing new ideas, guidelines, and standards that can ensure that all airlines remain profitable while at the same time conserving the natural environment. It achieves this aim by presenting evidence-based guidelines for packaging cargo and minimizing wastes throughout the transportation process.

The third area IATA provides adequate support and codes is that of dangerous or flammable goods. For instance, it presents detailed directions for handling empty oxygen canisters, flammable cargo, and hazardous materials. Companies should consider them to improve the safety of all stakeholders and protect crafts. HAZMAT is an outstanding IATA standard for handling and transporting dangerous materials (Abeyratne 67). Finally, e-commerce logistics is an essential field that IATA is currently taking into consideration. This agency has partnered with stakeholders to develop global standards that will result in the reduction of unnecessary wastes. This means that communication and support systems can be realized or pursued through the use of emerging technologies.


The above discussion has identified IATA as a leading agency that supports the goals of different airline companies. It has been taking the issue of cargo seriously by providing guidelines, standards, and codes that have the potential to maximize both safety and profits. The identified fields will continue to empower more members and make it easier for them to achieve their air cargo transportation goals.

Works Cited

Abeyratne, Ruwantissa. Law and Regulation of Air Cargo. Springer, 2018.

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Feng, Bo, et al. “Air Cargo Operations: Literature Review and Comparison with Practices.” Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, vol. 56, no. 1, 2015, pp. 263-280.

Hu, Yi-Chung, et al. “Improving the Sustainable Competitiveness of Service Quality within Air Cargo Terminals.” Sustainability, vol. 10, no. 7, 2018, pp. 2319-2333.

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