Measure 7.7 - Authorized operators


Trade Facilitation Measures for Authorized Operators

Each Member shall provide additional trade facilitation measures related to import, export, or transit formalities and procedures, pursuant to paragraph 7.3, to operators who meet specified criteria, hereinafter called authorized operators. Alternatively, a Member may offer such trade facilitation measures through customs procedures generally available to all operators and is not required to establish a separate scheme.
The specified criteria to qualify as an authorized operator shall be related to compliance, or the risk of non-compliance, with requirements specified in a Member's laws, regulations or procedures.
Such criteria, which shall be published, may include:
an appropriate record of compliance with customs and other related laws and regulations;
a system of managing records to allow for necessary internal controls;
financial solvency, including, where appropriate, provision of a sufficient security or guarantee; and
supply chain security.
Such criteria shall not:
be designed or applied so as to afford or create arbitrary or unjustifiable discrimination between operators where the same conditions prevail; and
to the extent possible, restrict the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises.
The trade facilitation measures provided pursuant to paragraph 7.1 shall include at least three of the following measures:
low documentary and data requirements, as appropriate;
low rate of physical inspections and examinations, as appropriate;
rapid release time, as appropriate;
deferred payment of duties, taxes, fees, and charges;
use of comprehensive guarantees or reduced guarantees;
a single customs declaration for all imports or exports in a given period; and
clearance of goods at the premises of the authorized operator or another place authorized by customs.
Members are encouraged to develop authorized operator schemes on the basis of international standards, where such standards exist, except when such standards would be an inappropriate or ineffective means for the fulfilment of the legitimate objectives pursued.
In order to enhance the trade facilitation measures provided to operators, Members shall afford to other Members the possibility of negotiating mutual recognition of authorized operator schemes.
Members shall exchange relevant information within the Committee about authorized operator schemes in force.