Advance Cargo Declaration…

Advance Cargo Declaration ... confused?  Let Transmar help you navigate through the new regulations.

The new EU Import Control System (ICS) for Advance Cargo Declarations - in force for all Greek ports from 1 July - throws up some real challenges for ship operators, carriers and their representatives.

From meeting the deadlines for electronic Entry Summary Declarations and Exit Summary Declarations, to the need to register for an EORI number, complying with the new system and its intricacies can seem complex and confusing.

That's where Transmar can help.


OBLIGATORY Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) in force for Greek ports from 1 July 2011



From 1 January 2011, the European Commission (EC) adopted a new regulation (Annex 30A to Regulation 1875/2006) regarding the entry and exit of goods in the Customs territory of the EU (Advance Cargo Declaration).

From 1 July 2011, this regulation will be in force for all Greek ports, meaning that the ship operator or carrier, or their representative (typically an authorized ship agent), will have to declare cargo information in advance to the Customs office solely in the case of import or export of goods.

The above-mentioned message is in the form of a pre-arrival electronic declaration - the so-called Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) and Exit Summary Declaration (EXS), both generally lodged by the person who is bringing the goods into or out of the EU's Customs territory (the carrier) or the person responsible for the haulage. It is possible, following approval and authorization, that these declarations can be submitted by a third party or by a representative.

The EU Advance Cargo Declaration Regime will apply in the following three cases:

  • The IMPORT of goods from third countries to one or more EU Member States;
  • The EXPORT of goods from one or more EU Member States to third countries; or
  • The TRANSIT of goods, which are not into free circulation, over the territory of one or more EU Member States.

The EU Advance Cargo Declaration Regime (ENS / EXS) will apply to all shipping sectors but there are different provisions for each of these sectors. The time limits within which a ship operator or its representative must submit an Advance Cargo Declaration are different for deepsea container shipping, deepsea bulk shipping, shortsea shipping and combined transport.

  • For Deepsea Container Shipping: 24 hours before loading of the cargo onboard a ship in a foreign (non-EU) port in case of import; or 24 hours before loading of the cargo onboard a ship at the EU port of departure. In case of import, the declaration obligation applies to each foreign (non-EU) port of loading and not just to the last foreign (non-EU) port of loading before entering the EU.
  • For Deepsea Bulk Shipping: 4 hours before arrival of the ship in the first EU port of arrival in case of import; and 4 hours before departure of the ship in an EU port in case of export.
  • For Shortsea Shipping and Combined Transport: 2 hours before arrival of the ship in the first EU port of arrival in case of import; and 2 hours before departure of the ship in an EU port in case of export.



The above-mentioned Exit Summary Declaration (EXS) will not be in force from 1 July 2011, but is due to become obligatory within the next few months.


Ensure that all goods to be imported into the EU via Greek ports from 1 July 2011 have been declared correctly, by checking with the representative at the loading port.


If nobody at the loading port has lodged an ENS at the first entry port of the EC, or the ENS has been lodged but during the trip the EU port of entry has changed, for example for bunkering purposes, then it is obligatory to advise the representative accordingly in order to send the initial or the revised ENS.

In addition to the ENS, there is another important message - the Arrival Notification (AN). This must be submitted to the Customs office immediately on arrival of the vessel at the first EU port of entry.


For the lodgment of the above mentioned messages, the following data must be available to the representative in advance:

  • Bill of Ladings or Cargo Manifests (copies)
  • UN Dangerous Goods Code (if the vessel is laden with dangerous cargo) anddetailed info for this cargo on board.
  • Loading port and Actual Time of  Departure (ATD) or ETD
  • Discharging port and ETA
  • Economic Operators Registration and Identification (EORI) number of carrier (vessel's owner or operator).
  • Intermediate ports  (if any) between loading and discharging ports & arrival / departure dates

In order to meet the declaration deadlines and thus avoid delays in transporting the goods, it is necessary to send the above data to the representative after loading at the very latest and, when possible, prior to this.


In this context, we must emphasize: transmissions that are not on time, are incorrect or are incomplete can result in fines and delays to the transport of goods, due to the risk analysis that must be carried out by the Customs authorities. In addition, an incorrect declaration can lead to Customs costs being incurred.



  • Our office staff have attended two seminars organized by the Ministry of Finance (12/2010 & 6/2011).
  • Transmar was assigned an EORI number in November 2010.
  • We are able to declare as owner's or vessel's representative the Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) concerning the first or second EU entry port or any other modification of the ENS that may be required during the vessel's trip.
  • We can also assist your company in registering for an EORI number (see below).



An EORI number, unique throughout the European Community, is assigned by a Customs authority or designated authority or authorities in a Member State to economic operators and other persons in accordance with the rules laid down in Part I, Title I, Chapter 6 of the Customs Code Implementing Provisions (CCIP).

By registering, for Customs purposes, in one Member State, operators are able to obtain an EORI number that is valid throughout the EC. Obviously, in order to benefit fully from this reform, holders must use the EORI number - once it has been assigned - in all communications with any EC Customs authorities where a customs identifier is required.

The provisions of the EORI number neither limit nor undermine the rights and obligations derived from requirements to register for, and obtain, any identification number demanded in individual Member States in fields other than Customs, such as taxation or statistics.


Requested documents for EORI number

The documents required for the registration and assignment of an EORI number to economic operators not established in the Customs territory of the European Community are as follows:

  • Personal declaration (provided by our office)
  • Application form (provided by our office)
  • Authorization letter to our office for the EORI registration formalities.
  • In the case of legal persons or associations of persons: a document from the business register (original or certified copy of an official document providing identification data and issued at least six months earlier by the authorities responsible for the business register or by chambers of commerce in the EU or in the third country). Customs authorities may ask for an official translation of the document.



Advance Cargo Declaration

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