Putting air freight on solid ground

Nov. 7, 2004
The Cargo 2000 (C2K) project, currently completing the second of three phases, was launched by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) as a

The Cargo 2000 (C2K) project, currently completing the second of three phases, was launched by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) as a reaction to serious challenges to the air cargo industry. As IATA has indicated, forwarders and airlines are losing market share, with a shift of $2.5 billion over five years.

The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) has pointed to the decline in yield as the air industry's largest single concern. Ron Cesana, C2K project director, adds that the airline industry shares the perception that it is not competing at the same level as the integrators to deliver reliable, timedefinite service with superior information integration and visibility. In order to achieve its goals, C2K has outlined four objectives:

  1. Be proactive in control of its processes;
  2. Develop a quality measurement program;
  3. Institute a quality management system; and
  4. Institute a certification program.

In all, there are three phases to the C2K program. The first, already achieved, focused on monitoring shipment planning and tracking from airport to airport at the master air waybill level. Established are metrics and auditing procedures to measure the automatic route map and plan for a shipment — which is generated when a booking is made — through the many events and their scheduled times.

Phase 2, just completed, covers shipment planning and tracking, door to door, at the house air waybill level. In Phase 2, forwarders calculate the precarriage map as a shipment enters the door. Airlines provide the airport-toairport route map. The last part of the phase covered movement of a shipment once it leaves an airline's custody and move, via final carrier to final customer.

Testing of the system and its metrics began in June 2004 at six major international airports — Amsterdam, Chicago (O'Hare), Hong Kong, London, Paris and Singapore. Six more airports will be added next month — Milan, Parana (Argentina), Seoul, Tokyo, Vienna and Toronto.

Phase 3 will deliver real-time management for shipments at the piece level with document tracking. The C2K Master Operating Plan reduces the total number of process steps in the air cargo supply chain from 40 to 19.

Cesana reports that in line with Phase 1, C2K members are certified at more than 300 locations around the world, and are measuring service in 75 cities, covering 4,500 individual trade lanes, while airlines are measuring more than 50,000 master air waybills a month. Phase 2 members are already measuring 90,000 house air waybills a month and expect to be measuring more than 500,000 a month by the end of the year.

Cargo 2000 Members

Air Canada

Air France




British Airways


Cathay Pacific



Korean Air

Lufthansa Cargo







DHL Danzas



Kuehne & Nagel


Schenker AG




Industry Associations

AF Logistik


Riege Software


Worldwide Flight Services

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