Australia the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area; the neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea and East Timor to the north. The population of 25 million is urbanised and concentrated on the eastern seaboard. Australia's capital is Canberra, its largest city is Sydney; the country's other major metropolitan areas are Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Australia was inhabited by indigenous Australians for about 60,000 years before the first British settlement in the late 18th century, it is documented. After the European exploration of the continent by Dutch explorers in 1606, who named it New Holland, Australia's eastern half was claimed by Great Britain in 1770 and settled through penal transportation to the colony of New South Wales from 26 January 1788, a date which became Australia's national day; the population grew in subsequent decades, by the 1850s most of the continent had been explored and an additional five self-governing crown colonies established.
On 1 January 1901, the six colonies federated. Australia has since maintained a stable liberal democratic political system that functions as a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy, comprising six states and ten territories. Being the oldest and driest inhabited continent, with the least fertile soils, Australia has a landmass of 7,617,930 square kilometres. A megadiverse country, its size gives it a wide variety of landscapes, with deserts in the centre, tropical rainforests in the north-east and mountain ranges in the south-east. A gold rush began in Australia in the early 1850s, its population density, 2.8 inhabitants per square kilometre, remains among the lowest in the world. Australia generates its income from various sources including mining-related exports, telecommunications and manufacturing. Indigenous Australian rock art is the oldest and richest in the world, dating as far back as 60,000 years and spread across hundreds of thousands of sites. Australia is a developed country, with the world's 14th-largest economy.
It has a high-income economy, with the world's tenth-highest per capita income. It is a regional power, has the world's 13th-highest military expenditure. Australia has the world's ninth-largest immigrant population, with immigrants accounting for 26% of the population. Having the third-highest human development index and the eighth-highest ranked democracy globally, the country ranks in quality of life, education, economic freedom, civil liberties and political rights, with all its major cities faring well in global comparative livability surveys. Australia is a member of the United Nations, G20, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, World Trade Organization, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, Pacific Islands Forum and the ASEAN Plus Six mechanism; the name Australia is derived from the Latin Terra Australis, a name used for a hypothetical continent in the Southern Hemisphere since ancient times. When Europeans first began visiting and mapping Australia in the 17th century, the name Terra Australis was applied to the new territories.
Until the early 19th century, Australia was best known as "New Holland", a name first applied by the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1644 and subsequently anglicised. Terra Australis still saw occasional usage, such as in scientific texts; the name Australia was popularised by the explorer Matthew Flinders, who said it was "more agreeable to the ear, an assimilation to the names of the other great portions of the earth". The first time that Australia appears to have been used was in April 1817, when Governor Lachlan Macquarie acknowledged the receipt of Flinders' charts of Australia from Lord Bathurst. In December 1817, Macquarie recommended to the Colonial Office. In 1824, the Admiralty agreed that the continent should be known by that name; the first official published use of the new name came with the publication in 1830 of The Australia Directory by the Hydrographic Office. Colloquial names for Australia include "Oz" and "the Land Down Under". Other epithets include "the Great Southern Land", "the Lucky Country", "the Sunburnt Country", "the Wide Brown Land".
The latter two both derive from Dorothea Mackellar's 1908 poem "My Country". Human habitation of the Australian continent is estimated to have begun around 65,000 to 70,000 years ago, with the migration of people by land bridges and short sea-crossings from what is now Southeast Asia; these first inhabitants were the ancestors of modern Indigenous Australians. Aboriginal Australian culture is one of the oldest continual civilisations on earth. At the time of first European contact, most Indigenous Australians were hunter-gatherers with complex economies and societies. Recent archaeological finds suggest. Indigenous Australians have an oral culture with spiritual values based on reverence for the land and a belief in the Dreamtime; the Torres Strait Islanders, ethnically Melanesian, obtained their livelihood from seasonal horticulture and the resources of their reefs and seas. The northern coasts and waters of Australia were visited s
A port is a maritime commercial facility which may comprise one or more wharves where ships may dock to load and discharge passengers and cargo. Although situated on a sea coast or estuary, some ports, such as Hamburg and Duluth, are many miles inland, with access from the sea via river or canal. Today, by far the greatest growth in port development is in Asia, the continent with some of the world's largest and busiest ports, such as Singapore and the Chinese ports of Shanghai and Ningbo-Zhoushan. Whenever ancient civilisations engaged in maritime trade, they tended to develop sea ports. One of the world's oldest known artificial harbors is at Wadi al-Jarf on the Red Sea. Along with the finding of harbor structures, ancient anchors have been found. Other ancient ports include Guangzhou during Qin Dynasty China and Canopus, the principal Egyptian port for Greek trade before the foundation of Alexandria. In ancient Greece, Athens' port of Piraeus was the base for the Athenian fleet which played a crucial role in the Battle of Salamis against the Persians in 480 BCE.
In ancient India from 3700 BCE, Lothal was a prominent city of the Indus valley civilisation, located in the Bhāl region of the modern state of Gujarāt. Ostia Antica was the port of ancient Rome with Portus established by Claudius and enlarged by Trajan to supplement the nearby port of Ostia. In Japan, during the Edo period, the island of Dejima was the only port open for trade with Europe and received only a single Dutch ship per year, whereas Osaka was the largest domestic port and the main trade hub for rice. Nowadays, many of these ancient sites no longer function as modern ports. In more recent times, ports sometimes fall out of use. Rye, East Sussex, was an important English port in the Middle Ages, but the coastline changed and it is now 2 miles from the sea, while the ports of Ravenspurn and Dunwich have been lost to coastal erosion. Whereas early ports tended to be just simple harbours, modern ports tend to be multimodal distribution hubs, with transport links using sea, canal, road and air routes.
Successful ports are located to optimize access to an active hinterland, such as the London Gateway. Ideally, a port will grant easy navigation to ships, will give shelter from wind and waves. Ports are on estuaries, where the water may be shallow and may need regular dredging. Deep water ports such as Milford Haven are less common, but can handle larger ships with a greater draft, such as super tankers, Post-Panamax vessels and large container ships. Other businesses such as regional distribution centres and freight-forwarders and other processing facilities find it advantageous to be located within a port or nearby. Modern ports will have specialised cargo-handling equipment, such as gantry cranes, reach stackers and forklift trucks. Ports have specialised functions: some tend to cater for passenger ferries and cruise ships; some third world countries and small islands such as Ascension and St Helena still have limited port facilities, so that ships must anchor off while their cargo and passengers are taken ashore by barge or launch.
In modern times, ports decline, depending on current economic trends. In the UK, both the ports of Liverpool and Southampton were once significant in the transatlantic passenger liner business. Once airliner traffic decimated that trade, both ports diversified to container cargo and cruise ships. Up until the 1950s the Port of London was a major international port on the River Thames, but changes in shipping and the use of containers and larger ships, have led to its decline. Thamesport, a small semi-automated container port thrived for some years, but has been hit hard by competition from the emergent London Gateway port and logistics hub. In mainland Europe, it is normal for ports to be publicly owned, so that, for instance, the ports of Rotterdam and Amsterdam are owned by the state and by the cities themselves. By contrast, in the UK all ports are in private hands, such as Peel Ports who own the Port of Liverpool, John Lennon Airport and the Manchester Ship Canal. Though modern ships tend to have bow-thrusters and stern-thrusters, many port authorities still require vessels to use pilots and tugboats for manoeuvering large ships in tight quarters.
For instance, ships approaching the Belgian port of Antwerp, an inland port on the River Scheldt, are obliged to use Dutch pilots when navigating on that part of the estuary that belongs to the Netherlands. Ports with international traffic have customs facilities; the terms "port" and "seaport" are used for different types of port facilities that handle ocean-going vessels, river port is used for river traffic, such as barges and other shallow-draft vessels. A dry port is an inland intermodal terminal directly connected by road or rail to a seaport and operating as a centre for the transshipment of sea cargo to inland destinations. A fishing port is a harbor for landing and distributing fish, it may be a recreational facility, but it is commercial. A fishing port is the only port that depends on an ocean product, depletion of fish may cause a fishing port to be uneconomical. An inland port is a port on a navigable lake, river, or canal with access to a sea or ocean, which therefore allows a ship to sail from the ocean inland to the port to load or unload its cargo.
An example of this is the St. Lawrence Seaway which allows ships to travel from the Atlantic Ocean several thousand kilometers inland to Great Lakes ports like Toronto, Duluth-Superior, C
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
United States Customs and Border Protection is the largest federal law enforcement agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security, is the country's primary border control organization. It is charged with regulating and facilitating international trade, collecting import duties, enforcing U. S. regulations, including trade and immigration. CBP is one of the largest law enforcement agencies in the United States, it has a workforce of officers. It has its headquarters in Washington, D. C. CBP has a workforce of over 58,000 employees, including officers and agents, agriculture specialists, aircraft pilots, trade specialists, mission support staff, canine enforcement officers and agents. More than 21,180 CBP Officers examine passengers and cargo at over 300 ports of entry. Over 2,200 CBP Agriculture Specialists work to curtail the spread of harmful pests and plant and animal diseases that may harm America's farms and food supply or cause bio- and agro-terrorism. Over 21,370 Border Patrol Agents protect and patrol 1,900 miles of border with Mexico and 5,000 miles of border with Canada.
Nearly 1,050 Air and Marine Interdiction Agents prevent people, weapons and conveyances from illegal entry by air and water. Nearly 2,500 employees in CBP revenue positions collect over $30 billion annually in entry duties and taxes through the enforcement of trade and tariff laws. In addition, these employees fulfill the agency's trade mission by appraising and classifying imported merchandise; these employees serve in positions such as import specialist, international trade specialist, textile analyst. The primary goal of the CBP Canine Program is terrorist apprehension; the CBP Canine Program is critical to the mission of the Department of Homeland Security: "To Protect the Homeland." The program conducts the largest number of working dogs of any U. S. federal law enforcement agency. K-9 teams are assigned to 74 Border Patrol stations throughout the nation. There are 328 designated ports of entry and an additional 14 pre-clearance locations in Canada, the Middle East and the Caribbean. CBP is in charge of the Container Security Initiative, which identifies and inspects foreign cargo in its mother country before it is to be imported into the United States.
In addition the CBP has legal jurisdiction to conduct some activities up to 100 miles inwards from any land or sea border. This can include operating interior checkpoints. CBP assess all passengers flying into the U. S. for terrorist risk via the Joint Terrorism Task Force and systems such as Advance Passenger Information System, United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indication Technology, the Student and Exchange Visitor System. CBP works with the U. S. Food and Drug Administration to screen high-risk imported food shipments in order to prevent bio-terrorism and agro-terrorism. Through the Container Security Initiative, CBP works jointly with host nation counterparts to identify and screen containers that pose a risk at the foreign port of departure before they are loaded on board vessels bound for the U. S. CSI is implemented in 20 of the largest ports in terms of container shipments to the U. S. and at a total of 58 ports worldwide. The Secure Electronic Network for Travelers Rapid Inspection program allows pre-screened, low-risk travelers from Mexico to be processed through dedicated lanes.
NEXUS is a similar program on the country's northern border with Canada. Along both borders, CBP has implemented the Free and Secure Trade, which uses transponder technology and pre-arrival shipment information to process participating trucks as they arrive at the border. An agreement with Canada allows CBP to target and examine rail shipments headed to the U. S. CommissionerDeputy Commissioner Office of Air and Marine Office of Field Operations Office of Border Patrol Office of Trade Enterprise Services Office Office of Acquisition Office of Finance Office of Human Resources Management Office of Training and Development Office of Information and Technology Operations Support Office Office of Intelligence Office of International Affairs Office of Chief Counsel Office of Congressional Affairs Office of Intergovernmental Public Liaison Office of Privacy and Diversity Office of Professional Responsibility Office of Public Affairs Office of Trade Relations CBP has the authority to search outbound and inbound shipments, uses targeting to carry out its mission in this area.
Under Section 596 of the Tariff Act, CBP is required to seize and forfeit all merchandise, stolen, smuggled, or clandestinely imported or introduced. CBP is required to seize and forfeit controlled substances, certain contraband articles, plastic explosives that do not contain a detection agent. In conjunction with the Department of State and the Bureau of the Census, CBP has put in place regulations that require submission of electronic export information on U. S. Munitions for technology for the Commerce Control List. CBP uses advance information from the Automated Targeting System and the Automated Export System to identify cargo that may pose a threat. CBP works with the Departments of State and Defense to improve procedures on exported shipments of foreign military sales commodities. Merchandise may be seized and forfeited if: Its importation is restricted or prohibited because of a law relating to health, safety or conservation.
A domestic airport is an airport that handles only domestic flights—flights within the same country. Domestic airports do not have customs and immigration facilities and so cannot handle flights to or from a foreign airport; these airports have short runways sufficient to handle short or medium haul aircraft and regional air traffic. Security check / metal detectors are used in most countries, but such checks were for domestic flights installed in many cases decades after checks for international flights. Most municipal airports in Canada and the United States are of this classification. At international airports in Canada, there are domestic terminals. Additionally, some airports that are named "international" are domestic airports that do not handle international traffic on a regular basis. Many of these airports are located through the United States. In the United Kingdom, an example of a domestic airport is Wick Airport, which operates frequent flights to other Scottish airports; some small countries or regions do not have any public domestic airports, or public domestic flights, due to its size or political reasons, e.g. Belgium, Hong Kong, Macau, Lithuania, Serbia, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates.
A regional airport is an airport serving traffic within a small or populated geographical area. A regional airport does not have customs and immigration facilities to process traffic between countries. In Canada regional airports service connections within Canada and some flights to the United States. A few U. S. regional airports, some of which call themselves international airports, may have customs and immigration facilities staffed on an as-needed basis, but the vast majority serve domestic traffic only. Aircraft using these airports tend to be smaller business jets, private aircraft and regional airliners of both turboprop propelled or regional jetliner varieties; these flights go a shorter distance to a larger regional hub. These airports have shorter runways, which exclude heavy planes with much fuel. In European countries, regional airports are classed as airports that don't serve the country's capital/most major city. Examples of larger regional airports include Barcelona El Prat Airport and Manchester Airport, which are both among Europe's busiest airports and are used by both large and small planes.
In countries like France and Sweden, a regional airport is an airport for small planes though they go to the national hub, just like flights from larger airports. Examples of small regional airports include Worship Airport. In northern Norway, a country with long distances and many short-runway airports, regional airports are those with flights to a regional hub, not to the capital. Domestic flight International airport International flight Civil enclave
An import is a good brought into a jurisdiction across a national border, from an external source. The party bringing in the good is called an importer. An import in the receiving country is an export from the sending country. Importation and exportation are the defining financial transactions of international trade. In international trade, the importation and exportation of goods are limited by import quotas and mandates from the customs authority; the importing and exporting jurisdictions may impose a tariff on the goods. In addition, the importation and exportation of goods are subject to trade agreements between the importing and exporting jurisdictions. "Imports" consist of transactions in goods and services to a resident of a jurisdiction from non-residents. The exact definition of imports in national accounts includes and excludes specific "borderline" cases.. Importation is the action of buying or acquiring products or services from another country or another market other than own. Imports are important for the economy because they allow a country to supply nonexistent, high cost or low quality of certain products or services, to its market with products from other countries.
A general delimitation of imports in national accounts is given below: An import of a good occurs when there is a change of ownership from a non-resident to a resident. However, in specific cases national accounts impute changes of ownership though in legal terms no change of ownership takes place. Smuggled goods must be included in the import measurement. Imports of services consist of all services rendered by non-residents to residents. In national accounts any direct purchases by residents outside the economic territory of a country are recorded as imports of services. International flows of illegal services must be included. Basic trade statistics differ in terms of definition and coverage from the requirements in the national accounts: Data on international trade in goods are obtained through declarations to custom services. If a country applies the general trade system, all goods entering the country are recorded as imports. If the special trade system is applied goods which are received into customs warehouses are not recorded in external trade statistics unless they subsequently go into free circulation of the importing country.
A special case is the intra-EU trade statistics. Since goods move between the member states of the EU without customs controls, statistics on trade in goods between the member states must be obtained through surveys. To reduce the statistical burden on the respondents small scale traders are excluded from the reporting obligation. Statistical recording of trade in services is based on declarations by banks to their central banks or by surveys of the main operators. In a globalized economy where services can be rendered via electronic means the related international flows of services are difficult to identify. Basic statistics on international trade do not record smuggled goods or international flows of illegal services. A small fraction of the smuggled goods and illegal services may be included in official trade statistics through dummy shipments or dummy declarations that serve to conceal the illegal nature of the activities. A country has demand for an import when the price of the good on the world market is less than the price on the domestic market.
The balance of trade denoted N X, is the difference between the value of all the goods a country exports and the value of the goods the country imports. A trade deficit occurs. Imports are impacted principally by its productive resources. For example, the US imports oil from Canada though the US has oil and Canada uses oil. However, consumers in the US are willing to pay more for the marginal barrel of oil than Canadian consumers are, because there is more oil demanded in the US than there is oil produced. In macroeconomic theory, the value of imports can be modeled as a function of domestic absorption and the real exchange rate; these are the two most important factors affecting imports and they both affect imports positively. There are two basic types of import: Industrial and consumer goods Intermediate goods and servicesCompanies import goods and services to supply to the domestic market at a cheaper price and better quality than competing goods manufactured in the domestic market. Companies import products.
There are three broad types of importers: Looking for any product around the world to import and sell. Looking for foreign sourcing to get their products at the cheapest price. Using foreign sourcing as part of their global supply chain. Direct-import refers to a type of business importation involving a major retailer and an overseas manufacturer. A retailer purchases products designed by local companies that can be manufactured overseas. In a direct-import program, the retailer bypasses the local supplier and buys the final product directly from the manufacturer saving in added cost data on the value of imports and their quantities broken down by detailed lists of products are avai
The ATA Carnet referred to as the "Passport for goods" or "Merchandise passport", is an international customs document that permits the tax-free and duty-free temporary export and import of nonperishable goods for up to one year. It consists of unified Customs declaration forms which are prepared ready to use at every border crossing point, it is a globally accepted guarantee for Customs duties and taxes which can replace security deposit required by each Customs authorities. It can be used in multiple countries in multiple trips up to its one-year validity; the acronym ATA is a combination of French and English terms "Admission Temporaire/Temporary Admission." The ATA carnet is now the document most used by the business community for international operations involving temporary admission of goods. The ATA Carnet is jointly administered by the World Customs Organization and the International Chamber of Commerce through its World Chambers Federation. Early suggestions for an international temporary admission scheme were made during the 1900 and 1913 Congresses on Customs regulations, which were examined by Customs experts convened in 1923 under the auspices of the League of Nations but no positive result was achieved.
In 1952, based on the recommendations put forward in the ICCs' s report on "Invisible Barriers to Trade and Travel" from 1949, the contracting parties to GATT adopted an International Convention to Facilitate the Importation of Commercial Samples and Advertising Material proposed and drafted by the International Chamber of Commerce and which entered into force on 20 November 1955. During the meetings of the Seventh Session Working Party, which prepared the text of the Convention, following a proposal by the French delegation, some consideration was given to the possibility of introducing a system of triptyques or carnets for samples of value carried by commercial travellers, it was suggested that such a system would alleviate the financial burdens and administrative formalities imposed upon firms sending representatives abroad. The Working Party was informed that a scheme for duty-free admission of commercial travellers' samples under cover of a customs triptyque had been worked out for operation on a bilateral basis between Austria and Switzerland though it had not yet been put into force.
On 1 March 1954, the Austrian Government informed the Executive Secretary of GATT that on 1 February 1954 the scheme for the duty-free admission of commercial travellers' samples was put into effect by the Customs Administrations of Austria and Switzerland. In accordance with this agreement commercial travellers and agents were permitted to import commercial samples from Switzerland into Austria, conversely, temporarily duty-free under cover of a commercial samples triptyque without the deposit of import duties; the guarantees for the import duties are given by an Austrian insurance company for imports into Austria, by a Swiss company for the imports into Switzerland. The application of this system was limited to collections of samples on which the customs duties would not exceed 60,000 Austrian schillings or 10,000 Swiss Francs; the period allowed for re-exportation was one year. Thus, based on this Convention, this triptyque scheme and following Charles Aubert's vision and initiative, the Customs Co-operation Council with the cooperation of the International League of Commercial Travellers and Agents and of the ICC's International Information Bureau of Chambers of Commerce prepared the Customs Convention Regarding the E.
C. S. Carnets for Commercial Samples which entered into force on 3 October 1957; the new Convention introduced the E. C. S. Carnet, a substitution on an optional basis for the usual national temporary importation papers which replaced any deposit or guarantee for suspended import duties and charges if such a guarantee was required by the customs authorities in a particular case; the initials E. C. S. stand for French words: Echantillons Commerciaux - Commercial Samples. The first countries to sign this convention were West Germany, Belgium, France, United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Sweden and Turkey and the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs acted as the depositary of the Convention; the Customs Co-operation Council informed the Executive Secretary of GATT that the "satisfactory results obtained by the use of E. C. S. Carnets for the temporary importation of commercial samples has induced the international trading community to propose that the facilities offered by the ECS Carnet Convention should be extended over the widest possible field."
This idea was supported by the International Chamber of Commerce. A preliminary enquiry on the usefulness of a customs document for temporary duty-free admission, carried out by the Customs Cooperation Council with the assistance of GATT, UNESCO and ICC showed general support for the preparation of a document on the lines of the ECS carnet, which could be used to facilitate, in particular, the temporary admission of professional equipment and of goods for display or use at exhibitions, etc. Since two Conventions concerning the temporary admission of these items were in the course of preparation, it was recognised that it would be desirable that the Convention creating the new document should be ready for adoption by the Council, at the same time as these Conventions. Hence, due to the ECS Carnet success, in 1961 the Customs Cooperation Council adopted the Customs Convention on the ATA Carnet for the Temporary Admission of G
Bag tags known as baggage tags, baggage checks or luggage tickets, have traditionally been used by bus and airline carriers to route checked luggage to its final destination. The passenger stub is handed to the passenger or attached to the ticket envelope: a) to aid the passenger in identifying their bag among similar bags at the destination baggage carousel; the carriers' liability is restricted to international agreements. The first "separable coupon ticket" was patented by John Michael Lyons of Moncton, New Brunswick on June 5, 1882; the ticket showed the issuing station, the destination, a consecutive number for reference. The lower half of the ticket was given to the passenger, while the upper half, with a hole at the top, was inserted into a brass sleeve and attached to the baggage by a strap. At some point, reinforced paper tags were introduced; these are designed not to detach as as older tags during transport. The Warsaw Convention of 1929 Article Four, established the criteria for issuing a baggage check or luggage ticket.
This agreement established limit of liability on checked baggage. Prior to the 1990s, airline bag tags consisted of a paper tag attached with a string; the tag contained basic information: Airline/carrier name Flight number Baggage tag number Destination airport codeThese tags became obsolete because they offered little security and were easy to replicate. Current bag tags include a bar code using the Interleaved 2 of 5 symbology; these bag tags are printed using a barcode printer on an adhesive thermal paper stock. This printed strip is attached to the luggage at check-in, allowing automated sorting of the bags by bar code readers. There are two ways that bar code baggage tags are read: hand held scanners, in-line arrays. In-line arrays are built into the baggage conveyor system and use a 360-degree array of lasers to read the bar code tags from multiple angles because baggage and the orientation of the bar code tag can shift as the bag travels through the conveyor belt system. One of the limitations of this system is that in order to read bar codes from the bottom of the belt, laser arrays are placed below the gap between two sections of conveyor belt.
Due to the frequent build-up of debris and dust on these lower arrays, the rate of successful reads can be low. The "read rate", the percentage of bar code tags read by these arrays, can be as low as 85%; this means that more than one out of ten bar code baggage tags are not read, these bags are shunted off for manual reading, resulting in extra labor and delay. For flights departing from an international airport within the European Union, bag tags are issued with green edges. Passengers are eligible to take these bags through a separate "Blue Channel" at Customs if arriving at another EU airport. Bar codes can not be automatically scanned without undamaged print; because of reading problems with poorly printed, crumpled, scored or otherwise damaged bar codes, some airlines have started using radio-frequency identification chips embedded in the tags. In the US, McCarran International Airport has installed an RFID system throughout the airport. Hong Kong International Airport has installed an RFID system.
The International Air Transport Association is working to standardize RFID bag tags. British Airways is conducting a trial to test re-usable electronic luggage tags featuring electronic paper technology; the passenger checks in using the British Airways smartphone app holds the smartphone close to the tag. The flight details and barcode are transmitted to the tag using NFC technology; because the tag utilises electronic paper, the battery need only power the tag during the transmission of data. Fast Travel Global Ltd has developed a re-usable electronic luggage tag product called the eTag; this is electronic paper-based but is not limited to a single airline. The passenger will check in using a supported airline's smartphone app and send the relevant flight information to the tag via Bluetooth Low Energy. Qantas introduced Q Bag Tags in 2011. Unlike the British Airways tags, they do not feature a screen, which means there is no barcode to scan; this has limited the use of the tags to domestic flights within Australia on the Qantas network.
The tags were given free of charge to members of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program with Silver, Gold or Platinum status. The tags can be purchased for A$29.95. Over the last years, there have been numerous of initiatives to develop electronic bag tags, by both independent technology companies as well as some airlines; the main benefits of electronic bag tags include self-control and ease-of-use by passengers, time-saving by skipping queues at the airport, improved read rates compared to printed bag tags and, as electronic bag tags are adopted, significant operational cost reduction for the airlines. The first company to launch has been Rimowa in a partnership with Lufthansa in March, 2016; the concept of electronic bag tags has been gaining ground following that launch. On January 9, 2018, Lufthansa introduced a new electronic bag tag to their passengers, BAGTAG. BAGTAG is the first secure operational electronic bag tag that can be attached to any suitcase and has integrated radio-frequency identification technology.
The first automated baggage sorting systems were developed in the 1980s by Eastern Air Lines