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EU AEO: Serious infringements of customs rules

(S,P) AEO that infringe customs rules may have their AEO status revoked. What does EU law require? Find out.

The AEO concept is based on the Customs-to-Business partnership introduced by the World Customs Organisation (WCO). Traders who voluntarily meet a range of criteria work in close cooperation with customs authorities to assure the common objective of supply chain security and are entitled to enjoy benefits throughout the EU.

The EU established its AEO concept based on internationally recognised standards and is a partnership programme between the customs authority and the AEO. This implies that there must always be a relationship between customs and the applicant/AEO. This relationship must be based on the principles of mutual transparency, correctness, fairness and responsibility.

But sometimes things don't go as planned.

Criteria for AEO Status

On the basis of Article 39 of the Union Customs Code (UCC), the AEO status can be granted to any economic operator meeting the following common criteria:

  • Compliance with customs legislation and taxation rules and absence of criminal offences related to the economic activity

  • Appropriate record-keeping

  • Financial solvency

  • Proven practical standards of competence or professional qualifications.

  • Appropriate security and safety measure

What has changed?

The EU clarifies the criterion laid down in Article 39(a) of the UCC on the absence of any serious or repeated infringements of customs legislation and taxation rules including no record of serious criminal offences, relating to the economic activity of the applicant.

Be more specific

In particular, certain provisions of Article 24 of Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/2447 are clarified:

1. As regards infringements:

a. the criterion is fulfilled were no administrative or judicial authority has taken a decision concluding that one of the persons described in point (b) of has committed such infringements over the previous three years.

b. The facts giving rise to the infringements must have occurred in the previous three years, even though the administrative or judicial authority might in some cases conclude on those facts after those three years have elapsed.

It is further clarified

2. that the relevant serious or repeated infringements of customs legislation and taxation rules are those related to the economic activity of persons described in point (b) in that Article.

3. which persons other than the applicant must, depending on the organizational structure of the applicant, be assessed with respect to the criterion. None of the following persons has a record of a serious criminal offence in relation to his/her economic activity including the applicant’s economic activity, where applicable:

(i) the applicant,

(ii) the employee(s) in charge of the applicant’s customs matters, and

(iii) the person(s) in charge of the applicant or exercising control over its management.

View the law

Access the law

AEO - CELEX_32020R1727_EN_TXT
Download PDF • 514KB

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