Authorised economic operator (AEO) status


The intention of the Commission Regulation (EC) No 648/2005 of 13 April 2005 amending Council Regulation (EEC) No 2913/92 establishing the Community Customs Code is to secure the Community borders and at the same time to facilitate goods movement by using electronic data exchange and customs simplifications. The Regulation introduces economic operator status (AEO). The AEO status will bring to operators who meet certain criteria facilitations with regard to customs controls and/or the use of simplifications provided for under the customs rules.


The EU AEO programme is a part of a world-wide initiative to secure the "Global Supply Chain". AEO status will enter into force on 1 January 2008.



The Benefits of the AEO's

  • world-wide recognition as safe and secure business partners in international trade;
  • lower risk score in risk analysis systems;
  • reduced levels of risk controls;
  • priority treatment in case of physical controls;
  • mutual recognition of AEO’s under Joint Customs Co-operation Agreements could result in faster movement of AEO goods through third country borders;
  • reduced data requirements set out for entry and exit summary declarations (Security and safety certificate only);
  • better position with regard to simplified procedures.

How to obtain AEO status?

All economic operators in the global supply chain, i.e. manufacturers, exporters, freight forwarders, warehouse-keepers, clearance agents, carriers and importers, can apply for AEO. All applications shall be submitted to the (regional) Customs Directorates Ljubljana.


Administrations will have 90 days from the date of receipt to process applications. During a transitional period of 24 months, starting from 1 January 2008, the period of processing applications will be extended to 300 days.


According to the Commission Regulation (EC) No 1875/2006 of 18 December 2006 amending Regulation (EEC) No 2454/93 laying down provisions for the implementation of Council Regulation (EEC) No 2913/92 establishing the Community Customs Code there are four blocks of conditions and criteria to be meet:

  • record of compliance with customs requirements;
  • commercial and transport records system;
  • financial solvency;
  • security and safety standards (AEO Security and safety).

Customs authorities can, following an application by an economic operator, issue:

  • AEO certificate – Customs simplifications;
  • AEO certificate – Security and safety;
  • AEO certificate – Customs simplifications / Security and safety.

The AEO certificate shall be recognised in all Member States. There will be no expiry date on authorisations.


Further information can be found on Commission's website and in the following documents: