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Initial notification of changes to the types of description for cargo, which will be acceptable under the European advance cargo security requirements - "the EU 24 hour rule".

 

London, 30th March 2009

Initial notification of changes to the types of description for cargo, which will be acceptable under the European advance cargo security requirements - "the EU 24 hour rule".

In preparation of the implementation of the European advance cargo security requirements (Commission Regulation 1875/2006), the European Commission has developed guidelines for acceptable and non-acceptable cargo descriptions to be used in entry summary declarations (ENS) and exit summary declarations (EXS).
According to EU legislation, plain language cargo descriptions may be used in ENS and EXS instead of providing HS codes. However, as is also the case in e.g. the United States' and Canada's advance cargo security rules, the European Commission decided that certain, currently used cargo descriptions such as "FAK" (Freight All Kinds) would not be acceptable for inclusion in the ENS and the EXS.


The European Commission's Guidelines for acceptable/non-acceptable plain language cargo descriptions can be accessed via the European Commission's website, here.

Although the Guidelines were developed for the purpose of the European advance cargo security rules, individual EU Member States may require that certain Customs filings (e.g., vessel arrival manifests and summary declarations for temporary storage) apply the Guidelines.


Individual EU Member States have the discretion to promulgate national requirements for any Customs act and filings that are not regulated by Community legislation. Thus, while individual EU Member States may not require lodgement of ENS and EXS for any cargo brought in to/out of their territory before 31st December 2010, they may promulgate their own national rules for the lodgement of manifests; the time lines for the lodgement of such manifests; and the content of the manifests, including acceptable cargo descriptions in the manifests. Individual EU Member States may also promulgate their own national rules for summary declarations for temporary storage, including acceptable cargo descriptions in such declarations.


Effective 1st July 2009, Dutch Customs plan to target cargo shipments for physical examination if the summary declaration for temporary storage for the shipment uses cargo descriptions that the Guidelines characterize as "unacceptable". Because, under Dutch Customs rules, a summary declaration for temporary storage also serves as an arrival notice or manifest, the Dutch Customs' decision to use the Guidelines for targeting shipments with unacceptable cargo descriptions also apply to arrival manifests lodged on or after 1st July 2009. Consequently, while usage of "consolidated" or "FAK" cargo descriptions will not necessarily result in a rejection of the summary declaration or arrival manifest, it will result in Customs inspection and examination with resulting delays to the shipments.
Whilst, NYK currently does not have any specific information regarding other EU Member States' intentions, we are aware that the EU Member State Customs authorities regularly undertake common discussions of such matters. It would thus seem likely that other EU national Customs administrations may also require conformance with the cargo description Guidelines for arrival manifests and summary declarations for temporary storage in the foreseeable future. As such we expect that other EU Customs authorities may establish similar requirements.


Accordingly, NYK wishes to bring the Guidelines to your attention now, so that the cargo descriptions that you provide to us in bills of lading - the basis for our lodgement of manifests, summary declarations for temporary storage, ENS and EXS - will be in conformance with the Guidelines. We would advise that you apply the Guidelines from 1st July for all EU cargo to minimize the risk of delays to your cargo because of your shipping documents' cargo descriptions.

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