New ICS2 Import Control System

Since 2021, the European Union has been gradually implementing a new safety and security program for imported goods, based on the IT system for transmitting information about shipments, known as the Import Control System 2 (ICS2).


The next, third stage of this program will start on June 3, 2024.


ICS2 is a common EU import control system. All shipments of goods from third countries to the Security Zone must be reported in advance so that customs authorities can conduct a risk assessment of the consignments.


The Security Zone includes the EU, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, and Northern Ireland.


The goal of ICS2 is to protect countries within the Security Zone from the import of dangerous goods and to meet heightened security requirements in global trade.


Under the third release of the European Union’s customs pre-arrival safety and security system – Import Control System 2 – all goods transported on maritime and inland waterways including postal and express consignments, to or through the EU, Norway, Switzerland, Lichtenstein, and Northern Ireland, will be subject to new requirements.


The transition period for maritime and inland waterway transport begins on June 3, 2024, and will last until December 4 of the current year. At this point, the implementation of the ICS2 system for shipowners and freight forwarders in maritime and inland waterway transport will start.


In 2025, the system is to be extended to road and rail transport.


Obligations of Carriers and Forwarders


A carrier or forwarder transporting goods into the customs territory of the EU must submit an Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) before the goods arrive at the external border of the European Union. If the entrepreneur lacks the required data, it must be provided by the entity that possesses it. The declaration may be submitted by the carrier, forwarder, importer, cargo consignee, or an authorized entity.


Required information in the ENS declaration includes:


–  A detailed description of the shipment (e.g., its contents, materials, intended use)
–  Precise details of the parties involved in the transport (seller, buyer, transport organizer, transporter)
–  A 6-digit HS code, allowing for the classification of goods
–  An EORI number (if assigned), issued by customs


Before the next phase of implementation, covering road and rail transport, we will inform on our blog about the requirements for carriers and business representatives.


More detailed information about the ICS2 system and technical issues can be found on the European Commission website.