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Authorized economic operators (AEO)

Basic information on AEO

The AEO concept is based on the customs-to-business partnership introduced by the World Customs Organisation (WCO).

The EU established its AEO concept based on the internationally recognised standards, creating a legal basis for it in 2008 through the 'security amendments' to the "Community Customs Code" and its implementing provisions. Traders who voluntarily meet required criteria in the cooperation with customs authorities assure supply chain security. These traders are entitled to enjoy benefits throughout the EU as the AEO status granted by one EU member state is recognised by the customs authorities in all member states.

The AEO programme, which aims to enhance international supply chain security and to facilitate legitimate trade, is open to all supply chain actors. Any economic operator established in the customs territory of the Union who is part of the international supply chain and is involved in customs-related operations, may apply for the AEO status. AEO status covers economic operators authorised for customs simplification (AEOC), security and safety (AEOS) or a combination of the two.

For more information on AEO consult: