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EU and Japan move toward digital customs procedures

EU News 157/2015

11 June 2015

The EU and Japan signed the Interface Control Document yesterday in Brussels. This marks the first step towards the development and implementation of a digitalized customs procedure. During the 7th EU-Japan Joint Customs Cooperation Committee on 10 June, top-level customs officials discussed bilateral cooperation and took an important step towards the creation of an IT system which will support automatic data exchange between Japanese and EU customs authorities.

Exporters across the world can be certified as an Authorised Economic Operator, or a trusted trader, in order to facilitate access to simplified customs regimes and be granted more favourable treatment when complying with new security requirements. The EU and Japan have mutually recognised programmes in place since 2010, and recognition has been fully implemented since 2011. The digitalisation of customs procedures is crucial in order to ensure that these programmes function properly.

The EU and Japan also confirmed their willingness to strengthen cooperation between their customs authorities with the objective of identifying and mitigating threats which may affect international trade routes. Facilitating trade by exploring new mechanisms, such as accelerated trade lanes, to support exporters in both the EU and Japan was also a key priority of the meeting. The objective of such innovations is to provide concrete benefits for businesses trading across borders.

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