The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) announced that Zimbabwe has implemented the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) programme, a partnership programme between the customs authority and the economic operators to facilitate the movement of goods across international borders.

AEO is a programme under the World Customs Organization (WCO) SAFE Framework of Standards to secure and enhance international supply chain security and facilitate the movement of legitimate goods across international borders.

the AEO Programme is a voluntary programme open to all business entities that participate in the global supply chain.

According to an article compiled by ZIMRA for information purposes, Business entities that meet pre-determined compliance standards are accredited as AEOs and as such enjoy appropriate facilitation on Customs clearance.

In an article by ZIMRA, benefits of AEO included Improved relations with ZIMRA, Promoting an AEO accredited entity as a secure and reliable trade partner thereby improving business competitiveness, Mutual recognition of AEO authorizations between Customs authorities as a long-term benefit, Providing businesses with internationally recognized security standards and the opportunity to self-assess which allows the entity to have full insight into its operations and business practices, identify and strengthen any security or compliance-related weaknesses among others.

Meanwhile, the AEO is also required to keep proper records in terms of Section 223 of the Customs & Excise Act [Chapter 23:02], Ensure that its staff members conduct business in accordance with the procedures of the Customs & Excise Act and any other Act administered by ZIMRA or any instructions given by the Commissioner of Customs & Excise just to mention but a few.