We can safely say that the digital ATA carnet app being developed will in time replace the current paper based system.
A year ago, Dynamic carried out the first trial of a digital ATA carnet in the UK. An approach which will transform the ATA carnet system and make the process easier, so you may be wondering why they are not yet in use.
The reality is that changing a global customs system is not a quick process but progress has been made and trials are continuing. The latest was in North Macedonia this May, others have taken place, from China to Canada.
Essential system attributes have been built. A smartphone app for users, to allow digital declarations, customs software to enable officers to verify carnets, a central database and a gateway for national bodies.
Information from the trials is being studied and tweaks made, to ensure that the approach is practical for all involved.
How Will The System Work?
The plan is not to reinvent the wheel, simply to replace an existing facility with one which is better to use and eliminates error:
- You will be issued with a digital ATA Carnet, generated by a National Issuing and Claims Systems, normally through a supplier, such as Dynamic Dox.
- The carnet can then be downloaded via a dedicated smartphone app. You will be able to safely share the carnet with a customs representative, or agent.
- Security is maintained throughout, the digital ATA carnet is encrypted and will never be transmitted in an open format on the carnet network.
- When you reach a border, the downloaded carnet is unlocked and a declaration prepared within the app. A QR code is generated for each declaration.
- Customs officers scan the QR code, review transaction details via an ATA carnet customs portal and determine if goods can enter or exit the border.
- Once the declaration is accepted, the transaction is recorded via the portal and a confirmation sent to the holder’s, or representative’s smartphone.
Apart from maintaining accuracy and security, a notable benefit will be speed. You will be able to pass through customs far quicker.
Looking To The Future
We can’t yet give a date for when digital ATA carnets will move from trial to real world use but progress has been reasonable. Infrastructure changes are not required, all the system needs is a reliable internet connection.
You can of course add to that multiple language use, effective security, customs staff training, worldwide user information and device compatibility.
The system should also be technically flexible, to avoid the trap which has beset other national, or international systems. Becoming outmoded before they are complete.
From what we have seen, this shouldn’t be the case with digital ATA carnets. In a sense they simply replace paper with an online equivalent and the requirements for this to work across the globe are coming together.