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e-Flash - Multimodality, Air Cargo and Training

20 October 2021

2021 General Meeting: Information regarding the Treasurer position

Immediate Past President Mr. Babar Badat, currently also serving as acting Treasurer, has informed FIATA that he will no longer run for an elected position within the Presidency following completion of his mandate as Immediate Past President at the November 2021 General Meeting.

Mr. Badat has made longstanding contributions to FIATA and its Presidency, having been elected four times to the Presidency, three times as Senior Vice President and one time as President. His commitment, strategic vision and achievements in restoring FIATA's position on the international stage are the subject of much praise and gratitude from the whole FIATA community.

Following his long service to FIATA, and in order to make way for new candidates, Mr. Badat has withdrawn his candidacy for the position of Treasurer at the upcoming 2021 General Meeting elections, noting that intelligent change, as well as the ability to evolve, are cornerstones of a successful organization.

Mr. Badat commends the significant evolutions that have been made in FIATA starting with the important innovations in the Parisi Presidency, which continued well into the Zhao Presidency. With the introduction of the "Reset Programme", which has brought significant changes in the organization through the concerted efforts of the current Pietersen Presidency, Mr. Badat believes that this will make FIATA more vibrant, relevant, and better prepared for tomorrow to serve the freight forwarding industry and FIATA’s vast membership.

In communicating this decision, Mr. Badat thanked the Presidency, Extended Board and FIATA members for their support, with special mention to the contributions made by Secretary General Mr. Robert Voltmann, previous acting Director General Mr. Steve Morris and sitting Director General Mr. Stéphane Graber.


Today's educational challenges in the industry discussed at the 2021 SAAFF Summit

The South African Association of Freight Forwarders (SAAFF) held its annual summit mid-September, also celebrating its 100 years of history. This event brings together each year key decision makers, influencers, industry experts and organisations to foster discussions on logistics (service delivery, research and analysis, advocacy...). The theme of this virtual edition was "Creating Industry Connectivity".

FIATA participated to a high-level discussion on training and education. FIATA Senior Vice President Thomas Sim was invited to share his great expertise during a panel discussion with Prof. Keith Engel (CEO, South African Institute of Taxation) and Mr. Jerann Naidu (Managing Director, Synergy Transformation Solutions) on: Educate today to empower tomorrow: the SAAFF Academy // Excellence in logistics through training in the 21st century.

During the discussion, Mr. Sim shared his keen interest in skills development and competency-based learning towards digitisation. He has been very active within training activities at FIATA, is the FIATA Logistics Institute (FLI) Rapporteur on Education to the FIATA Presidency, and a member of the Young International Freight Forwarder of the Year Award (YIFFYA) Steering Committee.

This event was a great opportunity to discuss today’s educational challenges in the industry and how FIATA is striving to meet them. Mr. Sim highlighted the needs and great opportunities with respect to digital training, and shared his vision for the future of education in the industry.


FIATA UIC 2021 Online Market Place Seminar on multimodality

The 2021 edition of the Market Place Seminar, "Multimodality in the year of rail", jointly organised by FIATA and UIC, with the support of CLECAT, was successfully conducted online on Thursday 14 October. Several high-level speakers addressed topics related to multimodality, digitalisation and corridor enablers. FIATA President Mr. Basil Pietersen opened the event with inspiring thoughts for the participants.

The first session, dedicated to setting the scene of multimodality in the transport sector, addressed the key role of multimodality in the sustainable movement of goods, and supply chains. Multimodal aspects within combined transport were also discussed, as well as the importance of negotiable transport documents, notably the Negotiable FIATA Multimodal Bill of Lading, which was highlighted by FIATA Senior Vice President Mr. Ivan Petrov.

The second session on digitalisation, was the occasion for speakers to exchange on their digital strategies. The audience had the opportunity to learn from different leading actors, such as Covestro, the UNECE and DHL.

Based on examples from all around the world, the third session discussed the corridor concept, notably the potential that could be brought by the southern corridor. Speakers then focused on the opportunities associated with the development of corridors in India and South Africa, which continue to flourish.


Sustainability, a key topic at IATA's World Cargo Symposium last week

Sustainability and optimisation are ever more central to the air cargo industry. This was highlighted during the Closing Plenary of the IATA World Cargo Symposium (WCS), held on 14 October, in which Mr. Brendan Sullivan, IATA Global Head of Cargo, Mr. Glyn Hughes, TIACA Director General, and Dr. Stéphane Graber, FIATA Director General, participated in a panel discussion on air cargo sustainability and collaboration between the three organisations.

As the focus is now on business recovery from the impacts of the pandemic, it was noted that the air cargo industry is facing a unique opportunity to actively contribute to the further optimisation of the supply chain to meet customers' transportation needs in a more efficient, transparent and sustainable manner.

Recognising that collaboration is key, it was stressed that FIATA, IATA and TIACA, representing significant cross-sections of the air cargo industry, need to define clear action points to work on, for the benefit of the industry.

Upon the suggestion of Mr. Glyn Hughes the panel agreed to meet regularly at the respective global events of the three organisations, and to report on the actions and achievements of their collaboration in similar panels.


Save the date for the 2021 YIFFYA Final "Meet the next generation" Event on 17 November 2021

Traditionally, the last phase of the Young International Freight Forwarder of the Year Award (YIFFYA) takes place during the FIATA World Congress. This year, in the absence of physical meetings, FIATA, in partnership with TT Club, will be hosting an online event.

This event will provide an opportunity to listen to the young and innovative minds of our industry and get to know the four finalists representing the talented next generation of logistics professionals, as they will compete for the title of YIFFYA global winner 2021. The name of the global winner will be announced during the event.

FIATA and TT Club are looking forward to seeing you on 17 November 2021 for this exciting event. More information on registration will follow.
| Online event open to FIATA members and non-members



  • 18 November – FIATA 2021 General Meeting
  • From 25 to 28 October – Institutes meetings
  • From 01 to 04 November – Advisory Bodies meetings
  • From 08 to 11 November – Regional meetings



  • 15 November – High-Level Dialogue on digitalisation and standards |Online event open to FIATA members and non-members (more information to come)
  • 16 November – High-Level Dialogue on policy |Online event open to FIATA members and non-members (more information to come)
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