Authorized Economic Operator (AEO)

Authorized Economic Operator (AEO)

The concept of Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) has emerged within the scope of the SAFE Framework of Standards adopted by the World Customs Organisation in 2005. Within the framework of SAFE, AEO is defined as a party to the cross border movement of the goods, as well as a manufacturer, importer, exporter, mediator, port, airport, or warehouse operating in compliance with the security of supply chain assured by the national customs authorities. Though the AEO concept is internationally defined and globally exhaustive, national customs administrations hold the discretionary power to define the criteria required for the AEO and the recognition of the AEO status.

In Turkey, local clearance transactions and the procedures relating to the authorized consigner on export are put into effect with the Regulation of Trade Facilitation published in the Official Gazette dated January 10th, 2013 and no. 28524. Trade facilitation regulation, issued in the Official Gazette dated May 21st, 2014 and no. 29006 and the former regulations have been abrogated, and appropriate legal arrangements have been completed with regard to local clearance transactions and the procedures relating to the authorized consigner at export  and authorized consignee at import. The Customs General Communiqué governing the trade facilitation procedures issued in the Official Gazette dated March 29th, 2013 and no. 28602, lays down the procedures and principles regarding the scope and electronic presentation of papers, when submitting an application for the Authorized Economic Operator Certificate. In this context, the Communiqué allows for the use of the facilities only by the local export clearance holding the permit within the scope of the authorized consigner warranty, and determines the relevant provisions for the lawful suspension of trade facilitation and amending the terms of redemption and cancelation.

Turkey’s Customs Legislation allows the natural and legal persons and state institutions and organizations established in Turkey’s trade zone (including the free trade areas, and operating for at least three years) to become Authorized Economic Operators. Applicants have to fulfil the following four conditions in order to qualify as an Authorized Economic Operator:


  • reliability;
  • reliability and traceability of the commercial registry;
  • financial capability; and
  • safety and security.
The Authorised Economic Operator status provides certain facilitations, e.g. local clearance in export and import, incomplete declaration submission, A.TR movement certificate, invoice declaration, and EUR.MED invoice declaration, trading on the green line, having priority while passing the border gates.

SAFE Framework of Standards emphasizes that the status of Authorised Economic Operator only makes sense with the mutual cooperation of the customs administrations of different countries. In this context, the World Customs Organisation encourages its members to conclude Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRA) for mutual recognition of their Authorised Economic Operators.

With a view to signing the Mutual Recognition Agreements, the required legal infrastructure is completed with the amendment into the Customs Law and the regulation and the communiqué regarding trade facilitation. In this framework, in accordance with Article 98/3 of the regulation regarding trade facilitation and Article 14th and the Decree no. 640, the Ministry of Customs and Trade has launched the required initiatives for the Mutual Recognition Agreement with Mexico, India, China, Hong Kong and particularly the EU and the USA. In this context, the first Mutual Recognition Agreement was signed with South Korea on June 9th, 2014 in Istanbul.

The applicable legislation regarding AEO in Turkey:
  • Tariff Law, Article 5/A;
  • Article 98 of the Regulation regarding trade facilitation that took effect in the Official Gazette dated March 21st,2014 and no. 29006;
  • General Communiqué regarding trade facilitation (sequence Nr:1) that took effect in the Official Gazette dated March 29th, 2013 and no. 28602; and

Article 14 of the executive order on the organisation and functions of the Ministry of Customs and Trade no. 640.

 More Information

 AEO-Frequently Asked Questions