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What does AEO status say about a forwarder?

What does AEO status say about a forwarder?

Wereldwijd expediteur AEO-status

“AEO” – you might have heard this acronym before. It stands for “Authorised Economic Operator”, which means “approved market participant”. What does this mean exactly? And why is it so important for shippers to have transports organised by a forwarding agent with AEO status? Allow us to clarify.


AEO status: a guarantee of reliability

Forwarders in possession of AEO status effectively work with the customs authorities. After all, both are responsible for the safety of incoming and outgoing goods. The AEO status is an internationally recognised status. Throughout the European Union, forwarders who have this status are regarded as reliable partners for customs transactions.


Specifically, the AEO status involves two licenses: customs simplifications and safety. To obtain one or both, a forwarder must meet a range of strict requirements, including:

  1. Appropriate safety standards related to people and resources involved in goods transport and customs matters
  2. A well-designed and managed commercial accounts and transportation administration.
  3. Demonstrably qualified for handling customs matters


What’s more, the customs authority will periodically audit a forwarder with AEO license(s) to check it still meets all requirements. Ritra Cargo has been in possession of the AEO licenses for both safety and customs simplifications since 2010.


Faster customs clearance

Forwarders with AEO status are recognised by the customs authorities to be reliable international trading partners. This benefits you in several ways when you import or export goods. For example, forwarders with an AEO license can count on:


In short, having AEO status means fewer delays when importing or exporting. According to Evofenedex, goods originating from or destined for a company with AEO status are 50% less likely to be subjected to customs checks. By working with a forwarding agent with AEO status you – the shipper – will take receipt of your goods sooner.


Internal processes and procedures in good order

A forwarder with AEO status has an excellent grasp of its processes and procedures. This means problems and errors involving customs matters (for example) can be eliminated as much as possible. Furthermore, at Ritra Cargo we value transparency of processes and procedures very highly. That is why we defined them in the Administrative Organisation and Internal Control (AO/IC) description.


Although not directly relevant for the AEO status, Ritra Cargo also maintain the same approach for financial processes and procedures. We feel that we can only provide customers with the best service if transparency is part of our business. As such, we maintain transparent financial processes and procedures, and we are continuously working on making it even better.


To make sure this constant development stays on track, we work with an accountant. Torture for some organisations, but for us it is a valuable partner offering an extra pair of eyes and valuable advice. The role of accountant at Ritra Cargo has been fulfilled by Ronald van Ijsselmuide for many years. As a member of the Franchise Organisation OAMKB Roosendaal, Ronald utilises a strong network of legal and fiscal advisors. This allows us to work together for a good grasp on the financial processes and procedures Internal processes and procedures.


If you have any questions about AEO, please contact us.


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