CargoX | EU customs single window system promises one-stop-shop for customs formalities
Why The CargoX Platform
Platform Help Login Register
Exporting to Egypt? Prepare for Egyptian ACI NOW. Start here

EU customs single window system promises one-stop-shop for customs formalities

Nov. 17, 2022, 2 p.m.

Digitalization of global trade is happening at many levels of trade at once; however at very different speeds. It is especially encouraging when developments happen at the level of governments and unions, as this boosts activity in a whole region.

The Council of the European Union has made a leap forward by adopting new rules for a single window solution for customs processing and digital collaboration between customs and related authorities.

This puts the EU on the map of soon-to-be highly modernized territories and it will put it head to head against Egypt, Singapore, and other highly modernized trade active countries, as well as the United Kingdom which is also adopting a completely digital trade document legislation as we speak.

In May 2022, the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament reached a provisional agreement on a single window for customs and set the required conditions for digital collaboration between customs and related authorities.

“I am pleased that we decided to create a single window for customs, as it will make trading with the EU a lot easier. All relevant authorities at the EU’s external borders will be able to access the relevant data electronically and collaborate more easily on border checks. We will be able to enforce our high European standards in areas such as health and safety, environment, agriculture or international heritage more easily. I am confident that the single window will make goods clearance a lot faster. This will affect hundreds of millions of movements of goods each year,” said Zbyněk Stanjura, Minister of Finance of Czechia.

How will the EU benefit from the single window

The EU is aware that efficient customs clearance and controls are essential to allow trade to flow smoothly while also adamant about protecting EU citizens, businesses and the environment. Once fully implemented, businesses will no longer have to submit documents to several authorities through different portals. The single window environment will allow customs and other authorities to automatically verify that the goods in question comply with EU requirements and that the necessary formalities have been completed.

The new rules are expected to smooth the flow of cross-border trade and will help reduce the administrative burden for traders, particularly by saving time and making clearance simpler and more automated.

The new single window for the whole EU will consolidate and streamline the enforcement of currently more than 60 non-customs EU acts as well as national non-customs legislation in areas such as health and safety, the environment, agriculture, fisheries, international heritage and market surveillance at external borders.

Member states’ authorities involved in goods clearance at the EU’s external borders will be able to access and exchange electronic information submitted by traders. The single window environment for customs will also support automated verification of non-customs formalities for goods entering or leaving the EU. 

This means that manual documentary controls to verify certain non-customs formalities will no longer be necessary.

About single window environments

As per the World Customs Organisation and the UNECE Recommendation No. 33, a “Single Window Environment” (SWE) is a cross-border intelligent facility that allows parties involved in trade and transport to lodge standardized information, mainly electronic, with a single entry point to fulfill all import, export, and transit-related regulatory requirements.

The architecture of the EU customs single window

This initiative will be implemented based on interfaces with existing import, export or transit systems at national level, rather than introducing entirely new IT platforms. This is an ambitious undertaking that will entail investment at both the EU and member state level, with gradual implementation expected to take place over several years.

Member states will invest in transforming processes and IT systems, so that they can fully reap the benefits of the single window. Member states will set up national single window environments, through which businesses will be able to upload the information related to the goods they are bringing in or out of the EU. These national single window environments will then link up through EU CSW-CERTEX with the EU databases managing non-customs formalities, so that all relevant authorities can access the required data and collaborate more easily on border checks. This is expected to create a much more streamlined and coordinated approach to goods clearance.

* * *

However, the acceptance of the new rules is only that – it is the adoption of the final wording, a text that represents the regulation that now needs to be signed at the European Parliaments November II plenary, and then be published in the Official Journal of the European Union. 

Even more importantly, we have yet to see how the patchwork of different software solutions will work out in real world scenarios – and hopefully, soon!

Similar solution deployed in Egypt - NAFEZA+CargoX

One practical case of a similar solution that was developed with new technologies and from scratch is the NAFEZA single window system for trade facilitation in Egypt, set up by the government of Egypt. CargoX is the authorized blockchain transfer gateway integrated into the NAFEZA single window. The NAFEZA single window with CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT) is used for Advance Cargo Information filings for sea and air freight, and new features for trade finance are coming soon.

  • The environment covers 30 Egyptian airports, seaports, land ports, dry ports, and free zones in compliance with international standards and best practices. It integrates 26 government bodies, associated with cargo clearance. 

  • The NAFEZA+CargoX environment is adopted by more than 32,000 importers, 20,000 exporters, 3,200 brokers, 340 shipping agencies  in Egypt, and more than 97,000+ registered companies and organizations on the CargoX Platforms. 

  • The efficiency of trade in Egypt has improved also - the cargo release times have shortened on average from 29 days to 9 days. 

  • Compliance costs for shippers were slashed from US$600+ to US$165 or less. 

Additional reads:

Other blog

WCO news: Egypt adopts innovative trade document exchange system
7 Dec 2022
An overview of the Egyptian adoption of innovative trade document exchange system, written by Gamal Kotb, General Manager at MTS and Igor Jakomin, Deputy CEO at CargoX, published originally in WCO News 99- Issue 3 / 2022 > Dossier: Disruptive Technologies, by World Customs Organization.
MLETR opening the door for electronic trade documents
5 Oct 2022
Last year saw tremendous growth in commitments to digitise international trade document flows and to accept electronic bills of lading and other electronic trade documents as standard and legally valid documents. Let's take a look at the progress in MLETR adoption and related activities.
DCSA eDocumentation standardization initiative overview and achievements
15 Sep 2022
DCSA’s major effort in the past three years has been overall standardisation of end-to-end document processes, with detailed data models and provision of interconnectivity for various platforms, which can self-certify compliance to various standards.
Document Management System vs. Document Transfer System
20 Jul 2022
When talking about electronic trade documents, it is important to outline where the document transfer systems touch and overlap with electronic document management systems, and what the main differences and advantages are.
How delegating makes filing Egypt ACI easier for principals through representative companies
23 May 2022
The CargoX Platform introduces delegations functionality to help principals delegate ACI filing to representative companies.
Blockchain document transfer: understanding the technology and its uses
26 Apr 2022
An overview article published in the World Customs Organization's News Magazine, written by Vjeran Ortynski, CBDO, CargoX, and Janez Kranjc, PhD, Chief Blockchain Officer, CargoX
In conversation: Vjeran Ortynski and Gamal Kotb, GM, MTS, about the CargoX and NAFEZA integration benefits
5 Apr 2022
The Egyptian Government has recently extended the ground-breaking customs project with CargoX (see the details here). Vjeran Ortynski, CBDO, CargoX, used this opportunity to talk to Mr. Gamal Kotb, GM, Misr Technology Services (MTS), to explain the benefits of this collaboration for the exporters, importers, and Egyptian governmental agencies.
International groups and frameworks for fast-tracking global trade document digitization
22 Mar 2022
CargoX has built a disruptive electronic trade document exchange platform with a neutral, public Ethereum blockchain. But despite the truly (r)evolutionary dimension, It is our goal for the CargoX Platform to be compliant with new and emerging industry standards. Some efforts among these are truly monumental and have started to gain traction and show real benefits for companies and organizations taking part in global trade.
What are the P&I clubs and what role do they play in the adoption of electronic Bill of Lading #eBL
26 Jan 2022
One of the most important moments in the business development of CargoX and its CargoX Platform for Blockchain Document Transfer (BDT) was the approval by the International Group of Protection & Indemnity Clubs back in February 2020. So, what does the IGP&I actually do?
What is Advance Cargo Information (ACI) and how does it benefit companies and customs agencies?
6 Dec 2021
Global trade is set to benefit from numerous opportunities to digitalize key processes in everything from logistics, finances, and compliance to, as the most recent development, customs processing.

Your free demo session with our experts

Please fill out the form below, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Trying to download the logo?

We have a better idea! Find high quality visuals in our press kit section.

Visit press kit