On 20th July, Burgess Salmon published an article saying that, in the EU, the AEO scheme is available to any business which is involved in the international supply chain and which carries out customs related activities, irrespective of their size or of the volume or value of their international activities. It explains that the regime is based on internationally recognised standards which allow for traders who meet a range of criteria to work in close co-operation with customs authorities to take advantage of simplified customs procedures. The EU currently has mutually-recognised AEO programmes with Norway, Switzerland, Japan, Andorra, China and the US. In the EU (including the UK) one can apply for either AEOC status – which provides for simplified customs authorisations, procedures and either a reduction or waiver of guarantees for customs duties; or AEOS status – which provides for enhanced security and safety clearance. Whilst the take-up of AEO status in the UK has, to date, been less than elsewhere in Europe, the article says that as the number of AEO registrations increases, so will the pressure on other businesses to comply. There is a real risk that unregistered organisations will be dealt with as secondary concerns in the future.