The World Customs Organisation (WCO) on 09 August published its 2019 Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) compendium, offering a concise and structured overview of existing AEO programmes around the world and of Mutual Recognition Arrangements/Agreements (MRAs) signed between countries.
The compendium provides a brief summary of each AEO programme, comprising information on accreditation criteria, procedures and expected benefits, as well as associated MRAs. AEO programmes and MRAs that are in the pipeline are also listed in the compendium.
Since the publication of the 2018 edition, a further 6 AEO programmes have come to light, bringing the total to 83 programmes.
The number of MRAs is also growing, with 74 bilateral and 4 plurilateral/regional MRAs compared to 57 in the 2018 edition. A quick analysis reveals that AEO programme certification and implementation are increasingly aligned with the standards and criteria stipulated in the WCO SAFE Framework of Standards.
For the first time, the Compendium also provides information on existing Customs Mutual Assistance Agreements (CMAAs) and on methodologies used to compare AEO programmes that would be useful for mutual recognition processes.
Over the years, the AEO Compendium has become a reference resource for Customs administrations and other key stakeholders, such as the business community, academia, international organisations who are looking for up-to-date information on existing AEO programmes and MRAs, and related trends and innovations. Going forward, the WCO is exploring ways of updating the Compendium using online tools/platforms.
Story by: Riaan de Lange