Glossary of International Customs Terms

ADMINISTRATIVE SETTLEMENT OF A CUSTOMS OFFENCE: The procedure laid down by national legislation under which the Customs are empowered to settle a Customs offence either by ruling thereon or by means of a compromise settlement.

AD-VALOREM DUTIES AND TAXES: Duties and taxes which are calculated on the basis of value.

AIRCRAFT GENERAL DECLARATION: Declaration conforming to the provisions of Annex 9 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, Chicago 1944. The general declaration is the basic document on arrival and departure providing information concerning the aircraft itself and summary information relating to the itinerary, crew, passengers and health.

APPEAL: The act by which a person who is directly affected by a decision or omission of the Customs and who considers himself to be aggrieved thereby seeks redress before a competent authority. Note Appeal in Customs matters is dealt with in Annex H.1. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and the General Annex, Chapter 10 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

ASSESSMENT OF DUTIES AND TAXES: Determination of the amount of duties and taxes payable. Note Assessment of duties and taxes is dealt with in the General Annex, Chapter 4 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

ATA CARNET: An international Customs document which, issued under the terms of the ATA Convention and the Istanbul Convention, incorporates an internationally valid guarantee and may be used, in lieu of national Customs documents and as security for import duties and taxes, to cover the temporary admission of goods and, where appropriate, the transit of goods. It may be accepted for controlling the temporary exportation and re-importation of goods but, in this case, the international guarantee does not apply. Notes 1. The ATA carnet may not, in principle, be used for the temporary admission of means of transport (See Commentary 2 to Article 1, Annex A of the Istanbul Convention). 2. Instead of “import duties and taxes” the ATA Convention uses the term “import duties”, giving it the same scope as the Glossary gives to the former expression.

ATA CONVENTION: The expression commonly used to refer to the Customs Convention on the ATA carnet for the temporary admission of goods (ATA Convention) adopted by the Customs Co-operation Council in Brussels in 1961.

 

AUDIT-BASED CONTROL: Measures by which the Customs satisfy themselves as to the accuracy and authenticity of declarations through the examination of the relevant books, records, business systems and commercial data held by persons concerned. Note Audit-based control is dealt with in the General Annex, Chapter 6 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

 

AUTHORIZED ECONOMIC OPERATOR (AEO): AEO is a party involved in the international movement of goods in whatever function that has been approved by or on behalf of a national Customs administration as complying with WCO or equivalent supply chain security standards. AEOs may include manufacturers, importers, exporters, brokers, carriers, consolidators, intermediaries, ports, airports, terminal operators, integrated operators, warehouses, distributors and freight forwarders. Note 1. Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) is dealt with in the WCO SAFE Frameworks of Standards.

BOARDING AND SEARCH OF MEANS OF TRANSPORT: The operations under which means of transport are visited by the Customs for: (a) collection of information from the person responsible for the means of transport and examination of commercial, transport or other documents concerning the means of transport, the cargo, stores, crew and passengers; and (b) inspection, examination and search of the means of transport.

BOND: An undertaking in due legal form, by which a person binds himself to the Customs to do or not to do some specified act.

CARGO DECLARATION: Information submitted prior to or on arrival or departure of a means of transport for commercial use that provides the particulars required by the Customs relating to cargo brought to or removed from the Customs territory.

Notes 1. The nature and contents of Cargo declarations may vary from country to country according to the commercial means of transport used. The particulars of the cargo (freight) may include kind, number, marks and numbers of packages, brief description of the goods, gross weight, etc. In some countries, these particulars may be submitted by electronic means.

  1. Cargo declarations are often referred to as “manifests”; in some countries Aircraft cargo manifests, Ship’s manifests or Goods manifests are accepted in place of the Cargo declarations. Cargo declarations are also sometimes referred to as freight declarations.
  2. The Annex to the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic, London, 1965, provides for a Cargo declaration (Model Form IMO FAL Form 2). With regard to air transport, the corresponding declaration is called Cargo manifest (Model Form as on International Civil Aviation, Chicago, 1944)
  3. Goods declarations may subsequently be presented in respect of the individual consignments covered by the Cargo declarations.
  4. Cargo declaration is defined in Specific Annex A, Chapters 1 and 2 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

CARGO MANIFEST: A listing of the goods comprising the cargo (freight) carried in a means of transport or in a transport-unit. The Cargo manifest which gives the commercial particulars of the goods, such as transport document numbers, consignors, consignees, marks and numbers, number and kind of packages, descriptions and quantities of the goods, may be used in place of the Cargo declaration. Note Examples of Cargo manifests are Aircraft cargo manifests, Ship’s manifests, Goods manifests and “bordereaux” (road traffic).

CARRIER: The person actually transporting goods or in charge of or responsible for the operation of the means of transport(*). (*) Annex A.1. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex A, Chapter 1 and Specific Annex J, Chapter 4 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

CERTIFICATE OF ORIGIN: A specific form identifying the goods, in which the authority or body empowered to issue it certifies expressly that the goods to which the certificate relates originate in a specific country. This certificate may also include a declaration by the manufacturer, producer, supplier, exporter or other competent person. Notes 1. In this definition the word “country” may include a group of countries, a region or a part of a country. 2. Specific forms for certificates of origin have been laid down in Annex D.2. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex K, Chapters 2 and 3 of the revised Kyoto Convention and in the framework of preferential arrangements such as the Generalized System of Preferences.

CERTIFIED DECLARATION OF ORIGIN: A declaration of origin certified by an authority or body empowered to do so (*). (*) Annex D.2. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex K, Chapters 2 and 3 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

CLEARANCE: The accomplishment of the Customs formalities necessary to allow goods to enter home use, to be exported or to be placed under another Customs procedure(*). (*) General Annex, Chapter 2 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

CLEARANCE FOR HOME USE: The Customs procedure which provides that imported goods enter into free circulation in the Customs territory upon the payment of any import duties and taxes chargeable and the accomplishment of all the necessary Customs formalities. Note Clearance for home use is dealt with in Annex B.1. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex B, Chapter 1 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

CN22/23: The special declaration forms for postal items as described in the Acts of the Universal Postal Union currently in force(*). (*) Specific Annex J, Chapter 2 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

COMMERCIAL FRAUD:  Any offence against statutory or regulatory provisions which Customs is responsible for enforcing, committed in order to : – evade, or attempt to evade, payment of duties/levies/taxes on movements of commercial goods; and/or – evade, or attempt to evade, any prohibition or restrictions applicable to commercial goods; and/or – receive, or attempt to receive, any repayments, subsidies or other disbursements to which there is no proper entitlement; and/or – obtain, or attempt to obtain, illicit commercial advantage injurious to the principle and practice of legitimate business competition. Note A list of commercial fraud case types is included in Chapter II of the CCC Manual on measures to combat commercial fraud.

COMPENSATING PRODUCTS: Products : (a) obtained within a country resulting from the manufacturing, processing or repair of the goods for which the use of the inward processing procedure is authorized; or (b) obtained abroad and resulting from the manufacturing, processing or repair of goods for which the use of the outward processing procedure is authorized(*).Note In some countries the products obtained from the treatment of imported, exported or domestic goods identical in description, quality and technical characteristics to those temporarily admitted for inward processing or temporarily exported for outward processing, as the case may be, are deemed to be compensating products (setting-off with equivalent goods). (*) Annexes E.6. And E.8. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex B, Chapter 2 and Specific Annex F, Chapters 1 and 2 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

COMPROMISE SETTLEMENT: An agreement under which the Customs, being so empowered, consent to waive proceedings in respect of a Customs offence subject to compliance with certain conditions by the person(s) implicated in that offence.

Notes 1. Compromise settlement of a Customs offence is dealt with in Annex H.2. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex H, Chapter 1 of the revised Kyoto Convention. 2. See also “Administrative settlement of a Customs offence”.

CONTAINER: An article of transport equipment (lift-van, movable tank or other similar structure) : (i) fully or partially enclosed to constitute a compartment intended for containing goods, (ii) of a permanent character and accordingly strong enough to be suitable for repeated use, (iii) specially designed to facilitate the carriage of goods, by one or more modes of transport, without intermediate reloading, (iv)designed for ready handling, particularly when being transferred from one mode of transport to another, (v) designed to be easy to fill and to empty, and (vi)having an internal volume of one cubic metre or more. “Container” shall include the accessories and equipment of the container, appropriate for the type concerned, provided that such accessories and equipment are carried with the container. The term “container” shall not include vehicles, accessories or spare parts of vehicles, or packaging or pallets. “Demountable bodies” shall be regarded as containers.

Notes 1. Temporary admission facilities for containers are dealt with in the Istanbul Convention (Annex B.3.) and in the Customs Convention on Containers, 1972. The latter Convention also stipulates the conditions for the acceptance of containers for international transport under Customs seal. 2. The Customs Convention on the international transport of goods under cover of TIR carnets, 1975, also deals with the use of containers in international Customs transit.

CONTAINER CONVENTION: The expression commonly used to refer to the Customs Convention on Containers, concluded in Geneva in 1972 under the auspices of the United Nations and administered by the Customs Co-operation Council.

CORRESPONDING ISSUING ASSOCIATION: An issuing association established in another Contracting Party and affiliated to the same guaranteeing chain. Note: This term is defined in Annex A to the Istanbul Convention.

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN OF GOODS: Country in which the goods have been produced or manufactured, according to the criteria laid down for the purposes of application of the Customs tariff, of quantitative restrictions or of any other measure related to trade (*). Note In this definition the word “country” may include a group of countries, a region or a part of a country. (*) Annex. D.1. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex K, Chapter 1 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

CPD CARNET: An international Customs document which incorporates an internationally valid guarantee and may be used, in lieu of national Customs documents and as security for import duties and taxes, to cover the temporary admission of means of transport and, where appropriate, the transit of means of transport. It may be accepted for controlling the temporary exportation and re-importation of means of transport but, in this case, the international guarantee does not apply. Note The CPD (Carnet de Passage en Douane) carnet is issued under the terms of the Istanbul Convention, the Customs Convention on the temporary importation of private road vehicles, the Customs Convention on the temporary importation of commercial road vehicles and the Customs Convention on the temporary importation for private use of aircraft and pleasure boats.

Continued on Monday

Courtesy of World Customs Organisation

 

 

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