BE-GATE speeds up cross-border e-commerce

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The BE-GATE customs platform has been launched to accelerate and increase efficiency of customs clearance for cross-border e-commerce in Belgium.

The platform was developed on the initiative of the Belgian Customs and Excise Department and is supported by the ports of Antwerp and Zeebrugge, and the airports of Brussels and Liege.

It is designed to process large amounts of data and guarantees rapid clearance of customs applications, with a high number of arrival notifications being transmitted simultaneously via an official customs approved form.

For shipments of less than €22, the form serves as a declaration of release for consumption, and for all other shipments a declaration in the Belgian customs software paperless solution is required.

Retailers automatically receive information for shipments that have been selected for customs control, and all other shipments are released immediately.

Werner Rens, head of marketing department at Belgium Customs and Excise says: “With BE-GATE, we have developed an efficient and effective e-commerce tool that prevents delays in the supply chain due to lack of transparency and communication. A win-win solution that also facilitates our work as a customs authority.”

Steven Verhasselt, vice president commercial at Liege Airport says: “Liege Airport started as a pioneer in full cargo airports about 20 years ago hosting TNT’s global air hub. Since then many years of growth have led us to become Europe’s 7th biggest cargo airport connected to 12 Chinese cities by air and by rail. The express expertise is now fully deployed to accommodate large e-commerce flows and we expect BE-GATE to further optimise flows at Liege Airport.”

Steven Polmans, director cargo and logistics at Brussels Airport adds: “Brussels Airport offers a global network of both passenger belly hold, express and full cargo aircraft capacity. With our ongoing expansion and new warehouses under construction, we are ready for the growing business of e-commerce. BE-GATE will help us to be an even more attractive entry point for e-commerce thanks to its facilitation and transparency.”