Taxation and Customs Union

EU Kompetenzrahmen für den Zoll

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The European Union Customs Competency Framework (EU Customs CFW) aims at harmonising and raising customs performance standards throughout the EU.

It has been developed in collaboration with public and private experts from EU countries, the World Customs Organization (WCO) and other international sources.

There are two versions of the EU Customs CFW

  • A version for Customs Administrations (available in 22 EU languages)
  • A version for businesses dealing with customs (available in English)

Download the EU Customs Competency Framework

What is the EU Customs Competency Framework?

The EU Customs CFW is the foundation which sets out a consensus view of knowledge, skills and behaviours required by customs professionals in the EU.

It also further defines public and private Customs roles (‘Job profiles’).

In addition, it offers tools to map and adapt the agreed EU Customs competencies and role descriptions to different customs organisations and structures, both for national administrations and businesses.

It allows to:

  • identify competency gaps and training needs
  • reduce the risks related to pending retirement waves
  • assess staff against established standards
  • improve both operational and human resources processes


Competency Framework

What are the framework’s components?

The framework includes four groups of competencies:

  • the core values
  • professional competencies
  • operational competencies
  • management competencies

The meaning and scope of the four categories and each competency are set out in the ‘EU Customs Competency Dictionary.

All competencies are further specified with well-defined proficiency levels

  • Aware
  • Trained
  • Advanced
  • Expert

Public and private sector core customs roles (or so-called ‘job descriptions’) complete the EU Customs CFW package.

Training for Customs professionals

European Training Curricula

Building on this framework, two European Training Curricula for Customs have been developed, one for the public sector, one for the private sector.

These curricula set out the ‘Learning Topics’ and ‘Learning Outcomes’ for training programmes that are tailored towards customs professionals working in the European Union.

Reference Training programmes

In addition, a set of Reference Training Programmes has been created for training providers as a basis for comparison to build or enhance their training programme structures and training materials.

Reference Training

Recognition process and Quality label

An EU Recognition Process for customs training programmes is being developed which should make it possible to deliver a quality label for the accredited Customs Training programmes (Masters, Bachelors, Expert modules or vocational training courses).

This will give a quality assurance to the trainees and help to further harmonise and raise customs performance standards throughout the European Customs Union.

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