China-EU trade lane pilot boosts trade between China and Schiphol

EU – China-backed pilot will reduce lead times and costs, and boost secure supply chains, through cooperation between Customs in China and the EU.

Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Monday 5th February 2018 – The first shipment to land at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol as part of a pilot program to streamline and secure Customs procedures between China and the European Union (EU) has arrived from Shanghai.

The EU – China Smart and Secure Trade Lanes (SSTL) is a Pilot project between the EU and China which allows testing end-to-end supply chain security instruments and mechanisms in line with WCO SAFE Framework of Standards. It aims to reduce lead times and Customs procedures, and increase security in the supply chain through data sharing between Customs.

Schiphol is the only European airport which takes part in the pilot, which makes use of an encrypted data exchange platform developed and maintained by the WCO.

The project has already resulted in reduced clearance times and increased predictability in the maritime supply chain through close cooperation between Customs in countries including China, the Netherlands and several other EU member states.

The first import SSTL shipment arrived at Schiphol in December, and was flown by Air China Cargo and booked by Yusen Logistics, one of the participants in the SSTL program.

“This is an important pilot program, which will help reduce lead times and further secure the supply chain, and we are pleased to be taking part,” said Piet Boogaard, Regional Managing Director, Yusen Logistics Northern Europe.

“As well as benefiting from faster release of goods and more predictable delivery times, we are proud to be supporting the development of standards that will strengthen and secure supply chains.”

The Customs authorities of countries participating in SSTL, which include EU member states such as the Netherlands as well as China and Hong Kong, are working together to recognize and make use of each other’s inspection findings, share risk information, and develop secure communication channels to achieve this.

The first air freight shipment under the SSTL project was delivered in from Schiphol to Baiyun Airport in Guangzhou, China last May.

“We are glad that Dutch Customs is participating in this pilot project as this strengthens our ties with Shanghai Pudong International airport, our largest cargo destination, as well as Bayun airport, home base of China Southern airlines” said Saskia van Pelt, Director Business Development Cargo, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.

“The delivery of cockpit instruments in Bayun was on its way to a nearby aircraft manufacturer within 21 minutes of landing on Chinese soil, and once there it immediately entered the production process.

“Increased speed in the supply chain will ultimately benefit all sectors in countries participating in the SSTL program.”

Until recently, the project focused solely on maritime freight flows, but the scope has now been extended to air transport and more SSTL flight routes are expected to follow between Schiphol and Shanghai Pudong and Baiyun.

The Netherlands has been part of the SSTL programme since its launch as part of an ongoing commitment to strengthening its mutual trade relationship with China.


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The first shipment to land at Schiphol as part of a pilot programme between China and the European Union (EU) has arrived from Shanghai

The first shipment to land at Schiphol as part of a pilot programme between China and the European Union (EU) has arrived from Shanghai











About Schiphol Cargo

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is the third largest air cargo hub in Europe, moving 1.8 million tonnes in 2017.

Schiphol offers 525.000 m2 of cargo warehouses, of which 40 per cent have direct airside access. This includes facilities for perishables and pharma/life science cargo in multiple controlled-temperature zones, featuring refrigerated/deep-freezer and heated storage/handling facilities.

Over 150 logistics service providers are situated in the airport region, with over 50% of all American and Asian European Distribution Centres located in the Netherlands. Schiphol benefits from close proximity to the Ports of Rotterdam and Amsterdam and an unparalleled European road feeder and distribution network.

In March 2017, Schiphol and its cargo community celebrated the first anniversary of the launch of Pharma Gateway Amsterdam that offers a CEIV-certified, closed, and transparent pharma airport process.

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About the Smart and Secure Trade Lanes Programme

The Smart and Secure Trade Lanes (SSTL) Pilot is an international proof of concept project to test safety and security related recommendations in the World Customs Organization (WCO) SAFE Framework of Standards1.

SSTL aims to combine enhanced security and reduce the administrative burdens in international supply chains by introducing a control mechanism for participating companies with known low risk consignments.

SSTL focuses on granting tangible benefits to participating companies.