In-line with the Government plans to implement international best practices in business, Oman has adopted the International Air Transport Association’s electronic airway bill (e-AWB) standard in replacement of the paper airway bill – the contract of carriage for international airfreight shipments.

The introduction of the e-AWB standard in the Sultanate will reinforce Oman’s position as an internationally competitive logistics hub with a digitally connected and integrated air cargo supply chain. The use of e-AWB allows freight forwarders and traders to communicate directly with over 120 airline operators around the world to report and manage their shipments. Omani traders will also benefit from the use of the e-AWB as it will remove barriers to trade by facilitating early (pre-arrival) reporting to customs and earlier release, reducing cargo storage time and costs.

In support of the implementation process, IATA and CHAMP Cargo Systems will offer freight forwarders low-cost online facilitation for the creation and sharing of e-AWB messages. This means that local businesses can benefit from the electronic reporting, without the need to invest in building digital systems in their businesses.

Oman Air Cargo and Asyad conducted an e-AWB workshop on 26th September 2018 for the trade partners and airlines by inviting delegates from IATA and CHAMP systems to share the best practices and create awareness about e-AWB. On this occasion Oman Air Cargo became e-AWB compliant by signing the IATA Resolution 672, Attachment D agreement. Oman Air Cargo is the commercial cargo division of Oman Air, National Carrier of the Sultanate of Oman.

Mohammed Ali Al Musafir, Senior Vice President, Oman Air Cargo said, “The digital advancement is changing the way industries operate. Oman Air Cargo is always at the forefront of adopting the latest e-initiatives to further develop the standards of the air freight industry in Oman and make trade easier and faster for all industry players.”

Mazen Al Homsi, Regional Cargo Manager MEA, IATA said, “The adoption of e-AWB will develop the air cargo community in Oman. IATA has been signing up more carriers, airports and freight forwarders into the e-AWB system. The e-AWB system that Oman Air Cargo is implementing will allow it to safely and proficiently empower its freight customers to perform the most essential tasks for cargo booking and data capture.”

The e-AWB initiative is an international standard that removes the requirement for paper documents, resulting in significant improvement in the air freight supply chain efficiency, as it enhances productivity, reduces costs and increases data accuracy and security. Additionally, it enables traders and airline operators to access, store and track information conveniently.