The China AEO Certificate is a document held by companies in China engaged in import and export activities.
Issued by China Customs, the certificate specifies the company's enterprise classification, which determines their level of inspections and more.
Requesting and verifying a supplier's China AEO certificate can be a sensible measure to understand if they are registered with China Customs as an "Authorized Economic Operator" and to check their AEO type.
The acronym "AEO" stands for "Authorized Economic Operator". In Chinese this is called "经认证的经营者".
AEO is key part of a framework of standards developed by the World Customs Organization to help support and secure global trade.
China is one of many countries to sign up to the framework, which aims to establish common systems for Customs organizations worldwide.
Ultimately, the goal is for different countries to recognize each others' AEO programs via mutual recognition agreements, paving the way for a secure global supply chain.
China Customs already has such agreements in place with 40+ nations, including those in the EU, Singapore, Japan, Australia, Switzerland plus many more.
This certificate is applicable to Mainland China-registered companies involved in import and export. Although not compulsory, it is very beneficial for those who deal with international trade.
Becoming a certified enterprise, especially an advanced certified enterprise, brings many benefits to a Chinese company, including priority goods inspection, lower inspection rate, faster customs clearance, designated customs liaison officers etc.
For a Chinese company, possessing this certificate can also help give further assurance to their customers about their capability to import to / export from China.