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New Rules of Aviation Security in Hong Kong – RACSF Scheme

Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department (CAD) has launched the RACSF (Regulated Air Cargo Screening Facilities) Scheme for screening air cargo at off-airport locations. Paying scrutinized attention to aviation security issues, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has issued a policy direction stating all air cargo should be subject to security screening by 30 June 2021. Air cargo security screening in Hong Kong primarily takes place at airport cargo terminals but to meet the ICAO requirements and cope with high volumes, it will be necessary to screen air cargo at off-airport locations. The CAD says: “Hong Kong is in full support of and has the obligation to meet the ICAO aviation security requirements. The Government has been working closely with the air cargo industry in enhancing the air cargo security regime to meet the new international aviation security requirements. The establishment of off-airport screening facilities will enable air cargoes to be screened at the existing warehouses or similar premises of the air cargo industry before such cargoes are transported to the airport for loading onto aircraft.” To operate off-airport air cargo screening facilities, the warehouse has to be equipped with x-ray screening equipment, training and supervision of screening personnel and site security. RACSF Scheme is commented by Director General of ATC Hong Kong Yury Vasilyuk: “Hong Kong aviation authorities announced last year the transmission to the new safety security rules, namely, the screening of 40 % of cargo via X-ray starting from 2019, up to 100 % in 2021” Hong Kong is known to be on the 1st place in the world  by the turnover during the last years. In 2017 more than 6 mln tons of cargo was handled, and the growth tendency is seen in the future. At present, airport security does only selected screening of the cargo. It is absolutely clear that even by installing the additional equipment Hong Kong terminals will be unable to cope with the screening of such volume of cargo. Yury Vasilyuk sums up : “ATC Air Service Ltd strictly complies with the rules and regulations on air freight, therefore we decided to obtain the status of RACSF (Regulated Air Cargo Screening Facilities) . It will allow us to screen the cargo in our warehouse, after which we can transfer it to the airport and place it on board of the plane without additional screening. In July 2018 we have ordered a new x-ray equipment that will be delivered in February 2019. We have obtained the needed license for its installation. We plan to install it in our new warehouse that will be equipped according to the requirements of aviation authorities to obtain RACSF status. Therefore, when the new rules come to the practice we will have practical experience of screening our cargo and will be ready to provide the screening of 100 % of cargo, passing through our warehouse, that allow us to provide quality service for our clients and will give us the substantial advantage over the competitors.”
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