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From non-EU countries

Air carriers that fly air cargo or mail into the EU from a non-EU airport are required to comply with the EU ACC3 programme for inbound cargo and mail. Only air carriers that comply with this programme can be designated as an 'Air Cargo or Mail Carrier operating into the Union from a Third Country Airport' (ACC3) and may thus carry cargo or mail into the EU. ACC3 designation is required for each non-EU airport from which an air carrier flies air cargo or mail to the EU.

ACC3s must ensure that all cargo and mail is physically screened according to EU standards or comes from an EU aviation security validated secure supply chain. EU aviation security validation of ACC3's cargo and mail operations at each departure airport for EU bound flights is mandatory since 1 July 2014.

EU aviation security validation

An EU aviation security validation is a standardized, documented, impartial and objective process for obtaining and evaluating evidence to determine the level of compliance of the validated entity. An EU aviation security validation is carried out by an individual who is approved as an EU aviation security validator by the appropriate authority of an EU Member State. Individuals may only be approved as EU aviation security validator if they have demonstrated appropriate competence and background, including impartiality and objectivity. Also, they are required to have succesfully been subjected to a background check.

An EU aviation security validation consists at least of an evaluation of security relevant documentation, such as a security programme, and of a verification of the implementation of aviation security measures. This verification is to be carried out on-site.

Within the EU, EU aviation security validators may be deployed to conduct validations of applicant regulated agents and known consignors. With regard to the ACC3 programme, they may conduct validations of applicant ACC3s, third country regulated agents and third country known consignors.

Risk-based measures

The EU ACC3 programme does not apply to cargo and mail operations from origins with robust aviation security measures and with an established low risk, as identified through an EU Risk Assessment. At the same time, additional rules apply to cargo and mail that has been identified, again through an EU Risk Assessment, as high risk-cargo and mail. The details of these risk-based measures are communicated to air carriers by the appropriate authorities of EU Member States.

Additional information

This website contains more detailed information on the EU air cargo and mail security requirements for air carriers , cargo handling entities in non-EU countries and for individuals or companies interested in becoming an EU aviation security validator .

Further information regarding the security of flights from non-EU countries and EU aviation security validations is included in two studies that have been carried out for the European Commission.

Related documents

Main aviation security regulations in relation to the EU ACC3 programme

Regulation (EU) No 859/2011 (note that most elements have been amended through Regulation (EU) No 1082/2012)

Regulation (EU) No 1082/2012

Regulation (EU) No 687/2013

Regulation (EU) No 1116/2013 (point 6.8.3.2)

Regulation (EU) No 687/2014

 

EU aviation security validation

List of approved EU aviation security validators

 

Answers to the most frequently asked questions on the EU ACC3 programme

Focus on ACC3 - Version 1.1

Vade-mecum des exigences ACC3 - Version 1.1 (French)