The WCO/IATA/ICAO Contact Committee on Advance Passenger Information (API) & Passenger Name Record (PNR) Data

Confirmed by the Council: June 2004

Updated: June 2019

Chairperson: Elected for a one-year term

Vice-Chairperson: Elected for a one-year term

Established: 2004

Duration: Unspecified

1. Mandate

The WCO/IATA/ICAO Contact Committee (Contact Committee) on Advanced Passenger Information (API) and Passenger Name Record (PNR) Data is established so that the WCO/IATA/ICAO Guidelines on API and other instruments and tools developed by the Contact Committee that relate to API and PNR may be managed and maintained by the three Organizations. In doing so, the Contact Committee will promote the implementation of the Guidelines and such other instruments and tools, consider any measures to secure uniformity in the interpretation and application thereof, monitor the application thereof, and consider any amendment (s) proposed to the Guidelines and other instruments and tools. In addition, the Contact Committee will examine means to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the use of API and PNR data for passenger facilitation and enforcement purposes in relation to the WCO mandate.

2. Membership

The Contact Committee shall consist of experts from all three organizations involved. As regards to representation of the WCO, the delegation shall consist of up to eighteen members drawn from each of the six WCO regions in consultation with regional Vice-Chairs, at least six of whom shall have experience in API and/or PNR reporting systems, and experience in risk profiling and targeting. The Secretary General may invite additional Members to attend the meeting as observers.

WCO membership shall be reconstituted every three years. The retiring members are eligible for re-nomination.

With regard to representation from ICAO, the delegation shall consist of an officer responsible for facilitation matters and an expert or experts nominated by ICAO, if required. IATA shall be represented by the Assistant Director, Facilitation Services and an expert or experts nominated by IATA.

The Secretary General of the WCO may invite representatives of non-member governments, or of any international organizations to attend meetings as observers.

3. Purpose and Scope

The Contact Committee deals with issues arising from the application of the API Guidelines and the other instruments and tools referenced in section 1 above and, in particular, seeks to keep the Guidelines and such other instruments and tools current and reflective of the needs of Members and of the air transport industry. As these Guidelines and other instruments and tools support the effort to counter trans-national crimes, including but not limited to, drug smuggling, contraband, money laundering, as well as terrorism, the Contact Committee is established to permit timely changes to the Guidelines and other instruments and tools.

To this end, the Contact Committee shall, inter alia:

  • promote the application of the API Guidelines and other instruments and tools for administrations developing API systems;
  • examine questions relating to interpretation and application of the Guidelines and other instruments and tools;
  • examine proposals for amendments to the Guidelines and other instruments and tools;
  • act as a platform for the exchange of information on issues of common interest related to providing advance passenger information to the authorities;
  • promote inter-agency cooperation to enhance the efficiency of the use of API / PNR data; and
  • examine means to ensure effective control of high risk passengers as well as efficient facilitation of legitimate passengers through the use of API / PNR data.

4. Key Deliverables

The Contact Committee shall adopt a report reflecting the discussion on the Agenda items and the conclusions reached. The Contact Committee shall submit the details of any proposed changes to the Guidelines and other instruments and tools and the Appendices thereto to the WCO’s Permanent Technical Committee (PTC), to the ICAO Secretary- General and to IATA’s Passenger Services Conference for their approval.

5. Means of Operation

The Contact Committee shall elect a Chairperson and optionally a Vice-Chairperson for a one-year term. The retiring Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson are eligible for re-election.

Agenda:

The Agenda for each session shall be drawn up by the Secretary General of the WCO, in consultation with IATA and ICAO. It shall include any proposals for amendments to the Guidelines and other instruments and tools communicated by Members or International Organizations. The Agenda shall be circulated to the members of the Contact Committee at least thirty days before the Contact Committee meets. Working documents, especially those which may require consultation at the national level or with other stakeholders, should be available to the Contact Committee in sufficient time to allow the appropriate consideration of the document.

A Members Only meeting can also be organized back to back with the Contact Committee Meeting.  Each organization can determine participation and topics of discussion for their Members Only Meeting.  For the WCO, matters relating to the enforcement aspects of the use of API and PNR data outlined in these ToRs shall be discussed during the Members Only meeting and reported/submitted to the consideration of the WCO’s Enforcement Committee, and other topics can be reported to the relevant WCO working bodies.

6. Resources Required

Meetings:

Meetings shall be organized annually. When required, the WCO Secretariat will organize virtual meetings and establish discussion forums on the WCO Members Web site.

General administrative arrangements:

The general administrative arrangements for the meeting of the Contact Committee, including the date and duration of each session and the priorities to be fixed for the items on the Contact Committee’s Agenda, shall be the responsibility of the Secretary General of the WCO in agreement with the other members of the Contact Committee.