Shippers that do not use agents registered at the Civil Aviation Department to handle their cargo from March 6 will have to pay a 50 cents per kilogram security penalty. Under the regulated agents regime (RAR) scheme, they will also be slapped with a $30 flat handling fee, plus a minimum $50 charge per airway bill. Shipments will need to be put through a registered or 'regulated agent' which can be an agent, a freight forwarder or another entity that has business with an airline operator and provides security controls. The scheme - which is to enhance the security of cargo in passenger aircraft - qualifies a cargo-handling agent, a freight forwarder or a consigner of air cargo to become regulated agents. Hong Kong Association of Freight Forwarding Agents chairman Anthony Lau Siu-wing said it would be ineffective if similar plans were not implemented at other airports in the region. Mr Lau said if the scheme was confined to Hong Kong, it would only mean additional costs for shippers, especially if they had not been using regulated agents in the past. Moreover, if a shipper wanted to avoid the scheme, he could send his shipment by freighter, he said. The RAR scheme will be applicable to passenger aircraft, which carry 55 per cent of Hong Kong's air freight.