The Ministry of Aviation, Ghana and the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) held a forum recently on the implementation of an Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS) at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA).
Known as “iBorders,” the proposed initiative will enhance compliance with Annex 9 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, and will be developed and implemented by Société internationale de Télécommunication Aéronautique (SITA) and iTrack, which represents SITA locally.
Over 60 officials from GCAA, Ghana Airports Company Limited, Ghana Immigration Service, the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority, and airlines attended the one-day event at the Ghana Civil Aviation Training Academy, where representatives of SITA and iTrack delivered presentations on key aspects of the APIS.
Acting Chief Director of the Ministry, Mrs. Christine Edmund, representing Ghana’s Minister of Aviation, Hon. Joseph Kofi Adda, says the APIS would ensure information sharing relating to border control, aviation security and counter-terrorism is available to all appropriate agencies. She states: “To consolidate the gains that have been made in the aviation industry and accommodate the increase in passenger volumes at KIA, it is essential that we find lasting solutions to current threats to the sector.”
She adds: “The collaborative efforts of all our stakeholders are significant in actualising Ghana’s vision of continued ICAO compliance and becoming West Africa’s aviation hub, and the Ministry of Aviation looks forward to your suggestions today and a follow-up with technical discussions to refine requirements towards the system’s implementation.”
Acting Deputy Director for Technical Services at GCAA, Mr. Charles Kraikue, stresses that member States of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) are required to request advanced passenger information from airlines, consistent with the UN specialised aviation agency’s Standard and Recommend Practices (SARPS) and UN Security Council Resolutions 2309, 2341, 2395 and 2396.
He notes: “The APIS, when operational, will improve the facilitation and speed of processing low-risk passengers, lower the cost of dealing with unwanted and inadmissible persons, and support efficient and risk-based resource allocation at KIA.”
Photo Caption: Cross-section of participants at the event