The Benefits of AEO Status for Exporters

Highlighting your strengths to potential trade partners and current customers is essential for any business, but for one involved in exporting and international trade, it is paramount. If you could reassure trade partners as to your reliability and trustworthiness bot in operation and financial matters, how would you do it?Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status does exactly that: it shows customers and trade partners that your role within the international supply chain is secure and highlights efficient and compliant customs controls and procedures.

Not mandatory, but considered essential

AEOAEO is not mandatory and at the time of publishing, there are no plans to make it so. None the less, the EU and the UK Government are encouraging the majority of organisations and businesses that export outside of the EU to sign up to this global initiative.

The status has been designed to look at all aspects of the supply chain, from origin to the final delivery destination, making it as secure as possible.

Who can apply for AEO status?

Registration is open to wide range of businesses that regularly export to outside of the EU, as well as those involved in trade within the EU. Companies involved in logistics, carriers, freight forwarding, and customs agents, importers, exporters and manufacturers are all being encouraged to look seriously at AEO status.

Lagging behind

AEO status has been in operation for over seven years but the UK significantly lags behind other EU countries. Here in the UK, there were only 372 approved AEO registrations compared to 5659 in Germany, 1451 in the Netherlands and 1223 in France (2015 figures).

It could be argued that with larger logistics sectors in Germany and the Netherlands, especially when compared to that of the UK, the expectation would be that the number of AEO approved operators would be higher.

However, there is a growing concern within the UK, especially amongst leading exporting businesses, that this lagging behind in terms of AEO approved businesses could mean a significant loss of traction in terms of international trade at some point in the future.

The fact that most exporters in the UK meet the basis registration requirements – a business established in the European Union (EU), be actively involved in customs-related operations, trade internationally and have Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) – means that AEO registration should be attainable for most businesses.

Quality standard

For any business, any accolade that increases standards can only be a good thing. As part of the registration process, HMRC stringently assess the financial robustness of a company. Although many companies and businesses view this warily, with help and advice from a specialist AEO consultant, this process is to be welcomed and not feared.

Benefits of AEO

This is not a paper exercise, but one that brings many benefits, including:

  • Greater access to priority clearance
  • Reduced administration
  • Improved traceable flow of goods
  • Increased security during transport
  • Fewer delays in dispatch
  • Improved security throughout the supply chain
  • Improved and quicker access to certain customs procedures

How can we help you?

If you’re in need of assistance with any aspect of certification here at Synergos we’d be delighted to help. Whether you have questions about the path to certification or are looking for advise and support to maintain an existing standard call 01484 817 444 or Email info@synergosconsultancy.co.uk and we’ll be happy to talk it over with you.

Published 28/09/2016

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Jenny Kilburn
Jenny Kilburn
Completed my Masters in Business Administration (MBA) in 2012 I was looking to start my own business. With over 10 years improving and streamlining business systems, I grasped an opportunity to assist a local business to improve their quality and communication processes by researching the requirements of a quality management system based upon ISO 9001 and conducted my first internal audit that resulted in 97 improvement recommendations. After a successful outcome, I was recommended again and again with glowing reviews and in February 2014, Synergos Consultancy was born. I now have the role of regularly reviewing and planning the strategic direction of the business to ensure that Synergos continues to develop, whilst at the same time, still actively working closely with some of our clients. In my spare time I love to attend the theatre to watch musicals, dance productions and plays. In 2019, I attended the theatre a whopping 24 times. I follow a plant-based diet which I absolutely love. A keen tick-tock follower, I have picked up a lot of interesting recipes. A firm favourite is Brussel sprouts and sriracha sauce baked in the oven. Delicious!
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