A dynamic framework is required to address the complexity of international supply chain and security practices among most Customs administrations nowadays. While there is a need for alignment with international standards to pursue MRAs in the long run, the Hong Kong AEO Programme allows flexible customization of security measures based on individual company's business model, operation size, risk profile and other related factors.

To cater for different stakeholders of the industries under this partnership programme, the Customs and Excise Department will grant AEO status to qualified companies in two tiers. This tiered accreditation will be awarded according to their level of compliance with pre-determined criteria set out as follows:-

General Criteria Tier 1 Tier 2
· Customs Compliance
· Maintenance of Commercial Records
· Financial Soundness
Security & Safety Criteria
· Premises Security & Access Control
· Personnel Security
· Cargo Security
· Conveyance Security
· Business Partner Security
· Security Education & Training
· Information Exchange, Access & Confidentiality
· Crisis Management & Incident Recovery -
· Measurement, Analysis & Improvement -

These accreditation criteria specify the requirements which companies participating in the Programme should adopt to enhance their security measures and standards. To test their readiness for AEO accreditation, companies are firstly required to conduct a self-assessment on their internal policies and operational procedures against these pre-determined criteria. Customs officers, upon receipt of the application documents, will conduct on-site validation to confirm the company's implementation of related security measures and procedures.