With effect from January 1, 2023, the federal German authorities will transfer responsibility for the organization, financing, management and performance of aviation security at Frankfurt Airport to Fraport AG. The handover is governed by a contract between Fraport AG and the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community (BMI) signed recently by both parties.
Fraport AG’s executive board chairman, Dr. Stefan Schulte, said: “We will assume management of aviation security at Frankfurt Airport from 2023. While this entails great responsibility, it will allow us to apply our experience and expertise to the operational management of the screening process – leading to reduced waiting times, to the benefit of all passengers.”
Before the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, waiting times at Frankfurt Airport checkpoints were one of the main causes of complaints among passengers and airlines. By assuming responsibility for screening tasks, Fraport hopes to implement integrated management of the majority of passenger-facing processes to achieve greater efficiency and potentially reduce waiting times.
Schulte added: “Negotiations with the Ministry and the Federal Police were very constructive. We wish to offer our express thanks for the positive working relationship and spirit of trust enjoyed in recent years. Together, we will continue to ensure that passenger safety and security remain the top priority.”
In addition to the organization, management and performance of the security checks, Fraport will be assuming responsibility for procurement of security equipment from January 1, 2023, as well as for calculating the corresponding fees and invoicing airlines.
Specifically, in compliance with the requirements defined by the Federal Police, Fraport will decide when security lines are opened and closed, how many staff will be deployed on each line, which BMI-certified devices will be procured, which BMI-certified devices will be deployed at which checkpoints, how the security check process will be organized in concrete terms, and which service providers will be contracted to perform the checks.
Dr. Pierre Dominique Prümm, Fraport board member and Executive Director Aviation and Infrastructure, explained: “The Federal Police remain responsible for all security-related issues and define the requirements we must fulfill. This ensures that security remains the overriding principle.”
In other words, even when management tasks are transferred to Fraport, the BMI remains the most senior aviation security authority in Germany. The Ministry defines the type of security checks to be made, and specifies the devices to be used. Consequently, the staff of the contracted security company will perform the checks on behalf of Fraport AG, but in accordance with the Ministry’s specifications, and under the supervision of the Federal Police. The staff who perform screening must meet the requirements and possess the qualifications defined by the government authorities.
Prümm added: “In close cooperation with the federal authorities, we will now move quickly to draw up an infrastructure plan and to establish the parameters for future collaboration with service providers for security screenings. Our strategic and operational plans for the organization and performance of security checks will also be closely coordinated with the corresponding government agencies and the airlines.”