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Update on the EU Customs Advanced Manifest Rule - SEAFREIGHT
The EU Customs advanced manifest rule aims to ensure that security risk assessment is performed before any imported goods arrive and enter the European Union (EU). This rule will be enforced from 1 January 2011 and applies to all 27 EU member states.

Entry Summary Declaration (ENS)

A main component of the rule is a requirement for ocean carriers to submit cargo declaration, called Entry Summary Declaration or ENS, 24 hours before cargo is laden aboard a vessel that will enter the EU.

To comply with this rule, shippers are required to submit complete and accurate shipping instructions (SI) to the freight forwarder at least 48 hours prior CY cut-off at the export load port. Shipping instructions must include all data elements required for ENS submission (see link below for list of required data elements). Carriers are then responsible for the timely electronic submission of the ENS with EU customs.

In case of non-compliance, the most serious consequence would be halting of cargo loading or unloading and the consequent disruption of cargo flows and supply chains. Furthermore, customs authorities will impose fines or other penalties on carriers and other parties responsible for the submission of cargo declarations.

How will VIP Freight help you?
VIP Freight aims to assist you throughout the implementation of this rule with minimal impact to your business. We are preparing for the implementation by ensuring that relevant processes are in place as well as our systems are ready to cater with this requirement. By working closely with EU customs, we have extensive experience in working with EU customs and thus we receive accurate and timely information with regards to the implementation.

Who is responsible to submit the declaration?
The legal responsibility for ensuring the Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) is submitted lies with the ocean carrier or “operator of the active means of transport”.  The carrier must send the ENS to the Customs at the first port of entry into the EU, irrespective if those goods are due to be discharged at that port or not.  As this is a carrier responsibility, VIP Freight will not be submitting any ENS messages directly to EU customs agencies.

When must the information be declared?
The Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) must be submitted to Customs at least 24 hours prior to loading the vessel.  The carriers have yet to publish their official cut-off times at origin, but many have stated they expect to stick to the same cut-off times as they do for U.S. bound AMS shipments today.  In this scenario, the VIP Freight documentation cut-off will be at least 48 hours prior to the published carrier cut-off.  VIP Freight will therefore communicate the cut-off requirements to the shippers as they become available.

How will the information be provided to the carrier?
The required information will be provided in the shipping instructions to the carrier. 

Are there any new data elements required?
We have analysed the requested data elements as written in the EU regulation and as outlined in various carrier advisories.  The only additional data element, outside of what is provided in the Shipping Instructions to the ocean carriers today, is the 4 digit HS code.

VIP Freight will require this 4 digit HS code at time of documentation cut-off, in order to accurately submit to the ocean carriers in a timely manner.  We strongly recommend that all shippers include this information on this invoice and provide it to our office at time of booking.

It is important to note that failure to submit the 4 digit HS code could result in issuance of a “Do Not Load” message from the destination EU customs office.

We will continue to send updates regarding developments and other relevant information. Should you have any further questions regarding this rule, please contact us at our office.