What is the IATA Digitalization Leadership Charter?

The IATA recently announced the launch of the IATA Digitalization Leadership Charter, aimed at accelerating the air cargo industry’s digitalisation

Widespread digitalisation clearly represents a significant opportunity for the air cargo industry. 

In fact, it’s arguably an opportunity that has been missed for far too long.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) contends that a lack of digital integration “prevents stakeholders from achieving truly efficient collaboration and creates reliance on manual processes and a lack of door-to-door transparency from a customer point of view”. 

To combat this, the IATA recently announced the launch of the IATA Digitalization Leadership Charter, which is aimed at accelerating the air cargo industry’s digitalisation journey.

Inaugural signatories include Cathay Cargo, CHAMP Cargosystems, Global Logistics System (HK), IAG Cargo, IBS Software, LATAM Cargo and Lufthansa Cargo, all of which have committed to five key guiding principles.

IATA promotes sustainable digital transformation

Developed in consultation with the IATA’s Cargo Advisory Council Members, airlines and the wider air cargo community, the Digitalization Leadership Charter seeks to drive innovation, enhance efficiency, and promote a sustainable and harmonised digital transformation.

Central to the charter is the importance of data sharing using IATA ONE Record for smooth and efficient data exchange.

“Digitalisation is imperative for the air cargo industry,” comments Brendan Sullivan, Global Head of Cargo at the IATA. “It requires alignment to ensure a unified and effective approach, and we’ve introduced the Digitalization Leadership Charter to spearhead this alignment. 

“By adhering to the charter's principles, it sets a benchmark for excellence.”

Signatories of the IATA Digitalization Leadership Charter. Picture: IATA

What are the guiding principles?

Signatories of the Digitalization Leadership Charter have committed to five key guiding principles, as follows:

  • Develop a unified and collaborative digital strategy that champions interoperability and the use of global standards across the entire supply chain
  • Enhancing organisational resilience through building robust digital infrastructure and implementing strategies that safeguard against cybersecurity risks while ensuring the responsible use of generative AI
  • Pursuing sustainable digitalisation with a focus on supporting eco-friendly technology initiatives
  • Pursuing digital excellence by staying ahead of digital trends, ensuring secure and sustainable practices, and establishing industry best practices
  • Using new technology ethically when embracing emerging technologies


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