The customs controls performed by the Customs and Excise Administration aim to verify the compliance of customs declared transactions with regulations applicable to declared goods while aiming for an adequate balance between such controls and the facilitation of legitimate trade.
In addition to the fiscal component, customs controls consist in verifying restricted or prohibited goods.
The customs controls linked to the circulation of goods allow the verification of one or more of the following:
- freight safety and security
- Security measures were introduced in the European Union (EU) customs legislation following the terrorist attacks in the United States in September 2001, primarily to secure the international supply chain. These consist in particular in the obligation to provide certain electronic data before the arrival of goods in the EU (Entry Summary Declaration - ENS) and prior to departure from the EU, in the implementation of the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) program and the introduction of a risk analysis system
- the fiscal component, relying on the accuracy of the filed customs declaration, and specially of the customs duties declared on imported goods, based on:
- proper use of suspensive customs procedures or simplified customs procedures granted to the operator
- exactitude of the declarations for excise products
- commercial policy measures and trade flows
- application of anti-dumping duties
- compliance with quotas
- Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) rules
- compliance with prohibitions and restrictions related to
- transactions involving drug precursors
- the export of cultural goods and the fight against the illicit trafficking of cultural goods
- the protection of intellectual property (counterfeiting)
- controls on the export of goods whose trade is regulated, for example dual-use goods
- the marketing of medicines for human use
- the import of organic agricultural products
- the circulation of protected plant and animal species
- product safety requirements
- environmental legislation
- sanitary and phytosanitary legislation
- food safety legislation.
Customs controls usually meet several of these objectives simultaneously.
Intra-Community movements of excise products are subject to excise controls carried out by the Customs and Excise Administration.
Customs controls may be carried out when goods are declared or within three years following acceptance of the customs declaration.
Customs authorities, coordinating different controls on the same goods, in close cooperation with other authorities, seek to ensure that both customs controls and any other controls (veterinary, phytosanitary, etc.) are carried out at the same time and at the same place.
Customs controls, other than random checks, are based on a risk analysis using computerized data processing procedures.
Customs controls may effectively include the following:
- physical examination of goods
- collection of samples
- inspection of the means of transport
- examination of documents or accounting
- inquiries made to guarantee compliance with customs rules and other commercial policy rules.
Authorized Economics Operators benefit from certain advantages regarding customs controls: prior information, priority handling and choice of place where control is conducted.
Excise controls are based on roadside controls or the verification of documents for release for consumption and review of accounting documents.
The Customs and Excise Administration is responsible for customs and excise controls.