MIAMI, Fla. – Ray LaHood, U.S. Secretary of Transportation, will give the keynote address to air cargo industry leaders attending The International Air Cargo Association’s (TIACA) 26th International Air Cargo Forum & Exposition in Atlanta, Georgia on October 2nd 2012.
The world’s premier air cargo event is expected to attract over 5,000 business leaders from all aspects of the air cargo supply chain, representing over 100 countries, as well as some 200 exhibitors. The three-day event at the Georgia World Congress Center, hosted by Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2012.
Michael Steen, Chairman of TIACA, said: “We are extremely delighted that Secretary LaHood is honoring our event as our keynote speaker. His support reflects the growing recognition of air cargo’s vital role in world trade and economic development. TIACA is working actively behind the scenes to increase dialogue between our industry, governments and regulatory bodies, and U.S. government departments have shown a strong willingness to work with us, most noticeably with plans by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to implement 100% screening of all cargo carried onboard passenger flights to the United States and the dialogue we have started with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). We are confident Secretary LaHood’s commitment to address the air cargo industry will send a strong signal to other international governments of the importance of building a closer relationship with the global corporations we represent.”
Air cargo is a US$60 billion industry that transports 35% by value of all goods traded internationally, worth $5 trillion a year. In Atlanta alone, more than 19,000 direct and indirect jobs in the Atlanta area are related to air cargo operations.
“The U.S. cargo industry plays a vital role in keeping our economy moving,” said Secretary LaHood. “We need a strong air cargo sector to make sure international trade continues to grow and contribute to job creation and prosperity in the United States.”
Secretary LaHood became the 16th Secretary of Transportation on January 23, 2009. In nominating him, President-elect Obama said: “Few understand our infrastructure challenge better than the outstanding public servant that I’m asking to lead the Department of Transportation.”
Secretary LaHood’s primary goals in implementing President Obama’s priorities for transportation include safety across all modes, restoring economic health and creating jobs, sustainability – shaping the economy of the coming decades by building new transportation infrastructure, and assuring that transportation policies focus on people who use the transportation system and their communities. As Secretary of Transportation, he leads an agency with more than 55,000 employees and a $70 billion budget that oversees air, maritime and surface transportation missions.