What is a Customs declarant: definition and role



The Customs Declarant is the bridge between his client and the customs services. He manages all the administrative documents and all the necessary administrative procedures for the latter so that the goods pass the border in the best conditions.

The Customs Declarant updates the necessary administrative documents, which will allow him to import or export goods. The Customs Declarant then plays the role of intermediary between the transit and accounting service of companies and customs.
The Customs Declarant verifies that he has in his hands all the required documents deemed essential by the customs authorities, namely the reason for transport, the content, the origin, the weight of the goods, the affixing of special mentions, etc. . When the goods go through customs, he submits the file with all the supporting documents to the customs service and ensures the smooth running of the procedure.

In certain situations, and in particular when customs so request, the Customs Declarer himself carries out the physical control of the goods. He then contacts the customer to make the most accurate statement possible. The Customs Declarer works in import-export, which means he must show diplomacy towards the administrations but must also spare the moods of his customers. The declarant must also know how to cope with the stress of deadlines.

Main missions

– Take part in the analysis of contractual acts
– Check the documents provided by the customer
– Sign all the necessary administrative documents
– Ensure the execution of customs formalities for export and import
– Ensure the fulfillment customs formalities
– Ensure the smooth running of the customs clearance procedure
– Play the role of interface between the transit and accounting service and customs
– Be on the lookout for changes in the various regulations
– Take care of insurance contracts, health certificates…
– Provide advice to clients on the regulations in force

Technical skills

The Customs Declarant:
– Master the legislation in force in his sector of activity
– Master customs clearance procedures
– Knows international business law
– Knows the environment related to international trade
– Has skills in tax law
– Mastery of tax techniques transit (import-export)
– Has management and supervision skills
– Mastery of computer tools
– Proficiency in English

Personal qualities

Personal qualities, especially interpersonal skills, are necessary to maintain good relationships with clients. He must also have these qualities:
– Rigor – Coolness

– Organization
– Resistance to stress
– Precision
– Taste for numbers
– Method
– Sense of contact

Hierarchic reattachment

Agency director (agency)
Commercial director for large accounts (commercial companies)
Export department manager (At a freight forwarder)

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