Trade & Facilitation Committee

The importance of effective customs procedures and trade facilitation measures to support e-commerce

The express industry provides a fully “integrated” service that accelerates the process of transporting goods across the globe. At the point where express shipments cross international borders, the express industry plays a unique and crucial role.

The European Express Association has been a long standing supporter of trade liberalisation and easier market access. Import, export and delivery of time sensitive goods and documents requires efficient European and global delivery networks.

Members of the European Express Association represent over 30% of customs clearances and some of the largest customs brokerage operations in the European Union. Not only does the express operator handle the customs clearance of a given shipment, it also looks after the payment of duties and taxes as required by the relevant geographical jurisdiction. Thanks to the role of express carriers, businesses that use express can be assured that the numerous rules and associated paperwork of customs clearance will be made as simple as possible.

The growth in international trade, combined with the resulting growth in the number of express shipments globally, therefore puts extreme operational pressure on both customs procedures and the express integrators themselves.

Furthermore, the current diversity of customs clearance procedures and practices across the world adds costs and imposes barriers to trade. These differences created negative impacts for both the express industry - making the implementation of modern trade practices unreliable and inefficient - and in turn the customers of express.

The EEA Trade Facilitation & Customs Committee represents the EEA in its work on these critical issues. In this section you will find more about the work of the committee as well as related links, documentation and Committee contact point.