A Successful 2024 FIATA HQ Meeting!

FIATA e-flash
5 May 2024

2024 HQ Meeting Highlights!

FIATA welcomed over 250 participants to discuss 45 key topics of interest throughout 15 workshop sessions, during the 2024 FIATA HQ Meeting: Uniting for Resilience, 23-26 April 2024!

The FIATA HQ Meeting convenes annually in Geneva, Switzerland, bringing together FIATA Association Members, Individual Members (freight forwarding companies), and industry stakeholders worldwide to address the most pressing industry issues. This year's edition underscored the pivotal role of freight forwarders as "Architects of Transport" in cultivating resilient supply chains, leveraging their expertise to devise efficient and sustainable transport solutions across diverse modes worldwide.

The 2024 edition of this annual event was a huge success! FIATA received positive feedback and appreciation for the workshop format, which allowed for in-depth discussion, knowledge and collaborative exchanges. The workshop sessions received an overall score of 4.5/5!

We take this moment to thank our high-level experts from international organisations and key industry stakeholders for moderating these sessions and the delegates for their active participation throughout the 4-day event!


Day 1 - Opening Session with Mr Willie Walsh, IATA Director General

Day 1 of the 2024 FIATA HQ Meeting kicked off with a fireside chat between the Director Generals of FIATA, Dr Stéphane Graber, and the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Mr Willie Walsh. This session facilitated a dialogue on reinforcing collaboration between freight forwarders and airlines, addressing evolving marketplace dynamics such as safety, security, sustainability, and digitalisation. Mr Walsh emphasised that FIATA and IATA complement each other in addressing the challenges facing our industry, and he positively assessed the evolution of relations with FIATA over the past few years, while expressing his support to the dialogue on a Global Air Cargo Programme.

In line with the collaborative ethos, FIATA President Turgut Erkeskin reiterated FIATA's commitment to uniting the freight forwarding industry, effectively representing the interests of its global membership, shaping policy at the international level in the interests of international trade facilitation, and service quality improvement through standardisation and digitalisation. This commitment reflects FIATA’s core values of excellence, innovation, collaboration, inclusion, and responsibility, aimed at achieving multi-stakeholder solutions.

The day ended with the Welcome Cocktail which left delegates to connect, network, and dance the night away!

Day 2 - Standardising the Path to Digitalisation

FIATA was proud to announce the launch of the Key Trade Documents and Data Elements (KTDDE) report, a collaborative effort by the International Chamber of Commerce Digital Standards Initiative (ICC DSI). FIATA played a pivotal role as a key contributor to the KTDDE report, particularly regarding the the FIATA Warehouse Receipt (FWR), the Sea Waybill, and the Shipper’s Letter of Instruction. By harmonising data approaches across the supply chain, the report serves as a crucial reference for industry stakeholders, laying the groundwork for digital trust on a large scale.

During the 2024 FIATA HQ meeting, a dedicated session of the FIT Alliance was held, of which BIMCO, Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA), International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Swift, and FIATA are founding members. The session introduced the objectives of the FIT Alliance, including its efforts to standardise the digitalisation of international trade and accelerate the adoption of electronic Bills of Lading (eBLs) across the shipping industry.

A press conference was also held to discuss the theme "Is a Recession Inevitable?" with FIATA President, Mr Turgut Erkeskin, FIATA Director General, Dr Stéphane Graber and the FIATA Airfreight Institute Chair, Mr Dawit Woubishet. Taking place in the wake of significant supply chain uncertainty and shocks, FIATA President, stressed: “This unpredictable environment led to the restructuring of global supply chains with a more protectionist approach, giving rise to nearshoring and allied shoring policies and changing the course of globalisation”. The FIATA President highlighted that the “global environment is expected to remain volatile and unstable”, a new normal in which freight forwarders and other supply chain actors will operate.


Day 3 - Launch of the FIATA Model Agreement for PLACI regimes

FIATA was delighted to announce the launch of the FIATA Model Agreement on multiple filing bilateral arrangements for Pre-Loading Advance Cargo Information (PLACI) regimes (“Model Agreement”). Developed with valuable input from air carriers, as well as multinational and SME freight forwarding companies, the Model Agreement is designed to facilitate successful compliance with PLACI regimes. The Model Agreement intends to clarify parties’ responsibilities in the complex reporting environment when using the option of “multiple filing”.

Access the Model Agreement and its accompanying Explanatory Note in the FIATA Members Area under the Resources tab. For more information on the Model Agreement and its implementation, please contact [email protected]

FIATA expresses its gratitude to the experts of the working group for their valuable contributions and support in drafting the Model Agreement.

The day ended with the Panama Night, a taste for the FIATA World Congress: The Great Connection, taking place in Panama  24-27th September 2024! Asociación Panameña de Agencias de Carga (APAC Panamá) brought Panama to Geneva with local flavors and free flowing rum.

Unite with the industry and register now to secure your seat! For more information visit the dedicated FIATA World Congress website


Day 4 - The Closing

The 2024 FIATA HQ Meeting drew to a successful close in Geneva, Switzerland, the hub of the international community. Amidst supply chain uncertainty, the focus was on finding agile, practical, and actionable solutions for freight forwarders to strengthen their role in facilitating global trade connectivity.

During a fireside chat between FIATA President, Turgut Erkeskin, and FIATA Director General, Stéphane Graber, resilience and collaboration emerged as central themes. In today’s volatile environment, freight forwarders play a crucial role in providing value-added services to facilitate supply chain fluidity and connectivity. The pivotal role of technology was underlined, aligning with FIATA’s efforts to provide digital industry solutions such as the Digital FIATA Multimodal Transport Bill of Lading (eFBL) and Freight Pay, among others.

Recognising the importance of nurturing the next generation of industry leaders, the FIATA HQ Meeting 2024 Closing Ceremony hosted the award ceremony of the Global Supply Chain Classroom (GSCC) Global Sustainability Supply Chain Student Competition. FIATA congratulates the winning teams from Beijing Institute of Technology, Tsinghua University and University of Rhodes Island  for their innovative contributions towards shaping the industry's future.

FIATA remains committed to pursuing excellence in logistics by promoting training, professional development, and collaboration among supply chain stakeholders. Leveraging its global membership strength, FIATA strives to enhance policies, accessibility, profitability, and efficiency in the markets, adding value to the supply chain and advancing industry standards.


2024 FIATA HQ Meeting Testimonials!

“The Extended Board meeting [at the 2024 FIATA HQ Meeting] was a testament to the dedication and commitment of our leadership towards creating a brighter future for the forwarding industry. The discussions were insightful, focusing on strategic planning and outlining the way forward.”

FIATA Extended Board Member

"FIATA HQ 2024 is all about enlightening updates, fruitful meetings about global happenings in the world of logistics; which will surely shape the future of logistics."

FIATA HQ Meeting Delegate

"FIATA hosted this week an impressive HQ Meeting in Geneva with the theme "Uniting for Resilience," attracting around 200 attendees from 60 countries."

FIATA HQ Meeting Delegate

"The event concluded with the GSCC–Global Supply Chain Classroom–Award Ceremony, recognizing the Beijing Institute of Technology, [Tsinghua University] and Rhode Island University for their contributions to sustainability and academic excellence in the global freight forwarding and logistics sector. It was particularly encouraging to see significant participation from young women."

FIATA HQ Meeting Delegate

“I am writing to express our profound gratitude for the exceptional FIATA HQ conference. The meticulous organization and the pivotal insights presented have left an indelible mark on our team.The conference was brimming with innovative ideas and practical solutions, shedding light on the path of development in the global shipping industry […] Through the influential and evolving role of FIATA, we look forward to working on a joint collaboration to activate everything the organization offers and strives for in developing the shipping industry bringing benefits not only to our enterprises but also to the broader to our country.”

FIATA HQ Meeting Delegate

"Thank you very much for this great organization of the HQ session in Geneva. Quality panels thanks to the relevance of the interventions. The division of participants into groups gives them the opportunity to express their views and share their experiences in their respective countries."

FIATA HQ Meeting Delegate

Access 2024 HQ Meeting Photos!

Access a selection of photos on the FIATA Event Application!
Stay tuned on our social media platforms for more information on where to access all the event photos!

Download the App here for Android Users

Download the App here for iOS Users

The FIATA Event Application will be the go-to place for all FIATA events. Navigate seamlessly through event sprogramme, explore speaker profiles, plan for social events, and maximise your networking opportunities. Download the FIATA Events Mobile App Guide here!

SEEFF Congress - Quo Vadis Logistics?

FIATA will be attending the South East European Freight Forwarders Association (SEEFF) Congress on 9-11 May 2024! The Congress will touch on these key topics:

  • Global trends and the future of logistics: development directions and strategies, support from the EU and local authorities
  • Infrastructure projects: railways, ports, logistics hubs, etc. & development of intermodal transport in Europe
  • Digitalisaiton and robotics
  • Sustainability in transport and logistics process & electronic transport documents
  • Education of employees in logistics and forwarding companies and hybrid work from hom and part-time work

Led by FIATA President Turgut Erkeskin and Immediate Past President Ivan Petrov, the meeting will also welcome the Managers of FIATA's Rail working group, Anastasiia Filipovska, and Road working group, Leticia Cherini, who will speak on the latter two topics, highlighting the importance of standardised digital documents, FIATA's multimodal electronic bill of lading (eFBL) and the importance of FIATA training in promoting inclusive and equitable economic growth and sustainable development. Many professional experts will also join the meeting as speakers to share the latest development of the logistics industry.

The SEEFF Congress only takes place every two years, and you shouldn't miss the opportunity to attend and meet the FIATA community in the region to discover the latest developments in our industry worldwide!

For more information visit the Congress website.


Watch out for scam emails!

In recent months, and in the context of FIATA's increased visibility in the public sphere, FIATA has been the target of several cybersecurity scams, with cybercriminals using FIATA's brand or the identity of FIATA leaders to lure its audience into sophisticated scam emails, which can at times lead FIATA readers to click on rogue links.

The latest of such attempts has been an email which claims to be able to send you the participants list for the 2024 FIATA HQ Meeting. Please do not click on this attachment, or any links in this email, and do not provide any personal or financial information! FIATA does not share your data with third parties without your consent. 

To find out more about the best behaviours to adopt to protect yourself against cybercrime, please consult FIATA's cybercriminality guidelines available to members on the FIATA website member’s area or access the document here!