Customs Declaration (CD)


A document to enable a declarant to indicate the customs procedure to be applied to the goods.


A variety of actors, such as the declarant, exporter, importer, owner of the consignee, carrier etc.


Customs administration.

Legal Framework

The legal basis for Customs/Goods Declarations is governed by the Revised Kyoto Convention on the Simplification and Harmonisation of Customs Procedures/ General Annex Standard 3.6, 3.7, 3.8, 3.11. Also relevant is the World Customs Organisation (WCO) Recommendation on the use of the WCO Data Model (DM).


According to the WCO Annual Report 2021/2022, there were 485.5 million Customs/Goods Declarations import declarations (of which 94.9% were digital) and 506.4 million export declarations (of which 95.5% were digital).

Key Standards

Standards are defined by the WCO Data Model, which also contains definitions for KDEs referring to the UN Trade Elements Directory (ISO-7372).

Major Differences between Standards

There are no other major global standards.


WCO Data Model is a platform agnostic standard. Customs administrations may determine appropriate data exchange protocols for their automated customs systems.

Key Data Elements & Definitions

  • Document: Document Reference Number; Conveyance reference number; Transport Document Number; Invoice Number; UCR: Trader Reference; Previous Document Number
  • Party: Office of Declaration; Submitter; Office of Declaration; Agent/ Exporter/ Importer; Carrier identification’ Supplier’ Warehouse
  • Location: Location of Goods; Transport Document Issue Place; Country of Origin
  • Goods: Total Number of Items; Delivery Destination; Office of Exit; Country of Exportation; Item Level Information; Description of Goods; Commodity Classification; Number of Packages; type of Packages Identification
  • Measure: Total gross weight; total number of packages
  • Date: Transport Document issue Date; Date of Arrival at place of Discharge; Invoice Data
  • Transport: Type of means of transport at arrival; identification of means of transport crossing the border; type of means of transport crossing the border; Type of means of transport at departure’ Transport Equipment Loaded Status; Shipping Marks
  • Terms: Terms of Payment Code
  • Amount: Total Invoice amount; Customs Value; Statistical Value
  • Consignment: Equipment Identification Number; Seal
  • Duty/ Tax: Duty/ Tax/ Fee Type (Header Level); Duty/ Tax Payment Method/ Duty/tax/fee assessed; Charges; Valuation Method; Duty/tax/fee type; Type of Duty regime; Duty/tax/fee assessed; Tariff quantity/ supplementary quantity


Both the status of global adoption of the WCO DM and the adoption of the electronic Custom/ Goods Declaration appear in the WCO Data Model

Other Information


Document-Specific Challenges

No Specific Challenges Identified.

Document Specific Solutions

Relevant actions covered in cross-cutting recommendations.