Mutual Recognition of AEOs
This section is relevant only for holders of AEOF and AEOS certificates.
Mutual recognition of AEO status is a key element to strengthen and assist end-to-end security of supply chain and to multiply benefits for traders.
The objective of mutual recognition of AEO status is that one customs administration in one country:
- recognises the AEO authorisation issued under the other programme and
- agrees to provide substantial, comparable and, where possible, reciprocal benefits/facilitations to the mutually recognised AEOs.
The specific agreed benefits are contained in each individual MRA, but in general the benefit of fewer physical and documented based controls is always considered. Avoiding duplication of security and compliance controls facilitates legitimate trade.
The practical implementation of an MRA requires that some details are exchanged between the customs authorities of partner countries. Economic operators are requested to provide their consent to exchange these details with partner countries. Providing this consent is not mandatory, but if it is not provided it will not be possible to benefit from MRA.
The consent to exchange the AEO details is general and cannot be provided only for a specific third country. The data are exchanged in a secure way and only used for the purpose of mutual recognition. The data will not be exchanged before the European Commission has assessed the level of data protection provided by the third country and ensured that it is adequate. Details to be exchanged are listed in the relevant agreement.
The consent is normally provided by filling in a specific box in the Self-assessment questionnaire but it can be provided or withdrawn at any time by sending a written request to the competent customs authority. The withdrawal of the consent to exchange the AEO details will also result in the withdrawal of the benefits associated with mutual recognition.
List of mutual recognition agreements and further information
The agreement (OJ L 199 of 31 of July 2009)
Agreement (OJ L 232 of 3 of September 2009)
Decision (OJ L 279 of 23 of October 2010)
Press release with video (IP/12/449)
Decision (OJ L 144 of 5 of June 2012)