Egypt – new import procedures

Internationalization

As of 1 April 2021, the Egyptian Customs has launched - on an experimental basis - the new customs system ACI (Advanced Cargo Information System), which aims to shorten the time of customs clearance of goods through the telematization of procedures for entry, avoiding traffic congestion at ports of destination.

Advance Cargo Information (ACI) is a new customs system that requires the entry of cargo data and documents (commercial invoice and final or initial bill of lading) at least 48 hours before the shipment of cargo from the country of origin.

The new customs system (ACI) aims to shorten the time it takes to clear goods through customs, avoiding traffic at the port of destination.

In addition, the new procedure aims to connect all land, sea and air ports with an electronic platform through the Customs Single Window (ACI) system. The first phase covers seaports. Subsequently, it will be applied to air and land ports.

According to the information received from the Egyptian authorities, the registration on the portal www.nafeza.gov.eg is carried out by the importer or his agent and/or the forwarder. Prior to the shipment of goods, the exporter should coordinate the process with the importer to identify the necessary documents to be uploaded to the new customs system.

For the transfer of documents related to the shipment of goods by the exporter in case of need, the Egyptian authorities recommend the use of the CARGOX platform.

The ACI will act as a customs ‘single counter’, linking all land, sea and air ports with an electronic platform. This “pilot” phase ended at the end of June and as of 1 July 2021 the procedure became mandatory for all companies exporting to the Egyptian market. The new system provides for certain obligations to be borne by both the exporter and the importer (or its agent or forwarder), including the following:

The Exporter must:

1) BEFORE SHIPPING GOODS register on the Cargo X platform https://help.cargox.digital/en/user-manual/registration/new-company-registration/.

With regard to the technical functioning of the CARGOX platform, companies are invited to contact directly the customer service on the platform itself.

2) Issue functional invoice or pre-invoice to the importer to obtain import pre-approval from Egyptian Customs and obtain the ACID (Advance Cargo Information Declaration) number.

The importer must:

1) BEFORE SHIPPING GOODS, register on the nafeza government portal to obtain the ACID number: www.nafeza.gov.eg

2) provide the exporter with this number to be affixed on the final documents

Subsequently, the Exporter shall:

  1. access the CargoX platform where he will enter the final documents (including the

ACID number) https://help.cargox.digital/en/user-manual/logging-in/login/

  1. send the original documents to the importer.

The documents must be entered at least 48 hours before the departure of the goods from the exporting country.

48 hours before the departure of the goods from the country of export.

The documents required are: commercial invoice and initial or final bill of lading, other documents usually required by the importer so before the goods are shipped, the exporter should coordinate the process with the importer to identify exactly which documents are required to be uploaded into the new customs system.

In the first application, both in the pilot phase and in the mandatory phase from 1 July 2021, the

1 July 2021, the new procedure will only involve goods entering through seaports. Subsequently,

the procedure will also apply to air and land ports. As of today, however, there is still no information on the timing of the extension of the new ACI system to air and land ports.

For further information on the workflow and the process simulation, please refer to our website.

More information on workflow and process simulation can be found at: https://www.nafeza.gov.eg/en/site/aci-info Frequently asked questions are collected at: https://www.nafeza.gov.eg/en/site/aci-faq

Author: Barbara Albertini

International Technical Dept.