Automatic Entry Processing (AEP) Reform

​​​Improvements to Automatic Entry Processing (AEP) functionality in the Agriculture Import Management System (AIMS) were released on 23 June 2018. The release marked the implementation of phase 2 of the AEP reform project. The primary objective is to increase industry participation in the Broker Class Approved Arrangements (AAs), sharing the biosecurity responsibility in the assessment of imported goods. The system changes are aimed at reducing complexity, providing greater flexibility, monitoring compliance more effectively and increasing the capacity to expand the number of commodities available for the AEP for commodities AA.

19.2 - Automatic entry processing for commodities (AEPCOMM) and Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB)

With the new Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) season beginning and new seasonal measures in place that has expanded target high risk goods manufactured in, or shipped as sea freight from an expanded list of target risk countries, AEPCOMM has been expanded to allow accredited brokers to assess documentation and direct consignments that may be subject to BMSB.

The requirements for Class 19.2: automatic entry processing for commodities (AEPCOMM) has been updated to provide the additional information to commodity groups. The changes include:

  • Adding goods subject to BMSB concerns as in scope of the used vehicles, aircraft and parts, used machinery and equipment group
  • Adding goods subject to BMSB concerns as in scope of the Highly processed and manufactured wooden articles, and unfinished timber and timber products groups
  • Expanding the used vehicles, aircraft and parts, used machinery and equipment group to include new goods of the in scope tariffs
  • Adding a new commodity group: BMSB target high risk goods to enable goods that would not normally be subject to department intervention to be managed using AEPCOMM.

The BICON AEPCOMM user access pathways are currently being authored. In the interim, an Assessment guide for class 19.2 accredited persons that provides information and pathways to assist with processing goods subject to BMSB concerns has been created. These pathways include new AEPCOMM codes to help you assess consignments and direct appropriately.

The guide provides information including flow charts to assist you in self-directing consignments subject to BMSB measures where a BICON pathway currently does not exist. Download the guide to assist you with your assessment and provide further information on understanding BMSB processing concerns.




File size

Assessment guide for class 19.2 accredited persons PDF13

807 KB

Assessment guide for class 19.2 accredited persons DOCX13588 KB

AQIS Entity Identifier (AEI) Numbers

It is a requirement in broker class approved arrangement 19.1 Non-commodity for containerised cargo (NCCC) and 19.2 AEPCOMM where a declaration relies on a treatment certificate assessment as part of document clearance that the AEI number must be declared in ICS.  Not declaring the AEI number is considered non-compliance against the arrangements.

In addition, this year, the department has approved offshore BMSB treatment providers and provided them with AEI numbers.  If you have a treatment certificate from an approved BMSB treatment provider and do not declare the AEI number then the declarations will be referred to the department.

Information to assist you in declaring the AEI for BMSB target goods from high risk countries can be found under the ‘AEI instructions for customs brokers’ heading on the Offshore BMSB treatment providers scheme page of the department’s website.

Information for declaring AEI details for goods not​ subject to BMSB may be found on the offshore methyl bromide treatment providers list page found on the department’s website.

Please note: that as part of the offshore BMSB treatment providers scheme, the department is conducting compliance analysis using information provided directly to the department from treatment providers to verify certificate AEI numbers and container numbers match.

Technical concerns

We would like to remind you of industry notice 53-2018 issued in June relating to email configuration from broker class approved arrangements class 19.1: NCCC and class 19.2: AEPCOMM. If over the last week you have found you are not receiving AEPNCCC or AEPCOMM directions it is likely that you have not updated your email address in ICS. The directions are being emailed to the email address listed as the primary contact in the branch registration contacts in ICS. The branch registration details may be found at the bottom of the Client Branch View in ICS.

Other technical concerns have been identified relating to re-lodge directions.

For the system to operate correctly all lines in a sea cargo import declaration need to be associated with a container (where applicable). Direction Re-lodge - Fix Line container association will appear when this does not happen.

When directing non-commodity for onshore intervention such as tailgate, cargo inspection or fumigation, to nominate a location you are required to enter the AA number (i.e. V1234) only into the AQIS Inspection Field. This occurs at the header level in ICS. If you put in more information than the AA number or do not include any information after you declare a non-commodity concern type you will receive a Re-lodge – Fix preferred location direction.

To direct AEP for commodity (AEPCOMM) consignments, the location is placed in the AQIS Premise ID on the line level.

Compliance concerns

We are currently seeing two common compliance issues.

  • The first is not using the most recent packing declaration.
  • The second is the need for a storage declaration due to the September 2017 update to the manufactured wooden articles pathway of the Timber and timber products in BICON case.

On 20 November 2017, a notice was issued providing details of the revised consignment specific and annual packing declarations. The revised packing declaration became mandatory for consignments of containerised goods subject to non-commodity recording requirements shipped on or after 1 July 2018. Non-compliance will be issued where the department finds the old packing declaration used in line with the Compliance guide and Approved Arrangement General Policies. The current version of the packing declaration may be found on the Department’s website.

The department relies on the documents initially presented in the Cargo Online Lodgment System (COLS) for document assessment, so you are reminded to have all the documentation required to assess the consignment present and correct at the time of lodgment. How we monitor compliance is published in the approved arrangement’s general policies.

The compliance classifications for broker class approved arrangements guide is available to provide accredited persons and BIPs with details of how to remain compliant with individual broker AA requirements. The compliance guide provides the classifications for non-compliance incidents providing transparency and consistency in implementing non-compliant outcomes.

Future expansion of Broker AA Class 19.2: Automatic Entry Processing for Commodities (AEPCOMM)

The enhancement on 23 June has simplified the lodgment process for industry and combined with the improved compliance model is enabling the department to add new commodities to the AEPCOMM arrangement more easily. We are now working on identifying commodities suitable for inclusion on the arrangement.

It is anticipated that new commodities will become available on the arrangement within the next six months. Advice on the new commodities for inclusion on the arrangement will be provided once confirmed.

If you have any suggestions for commodities to be added to AEP please contact AEP Support.

Industry support

TheAEP team can assist you in using the new arrangement. Send queries via email to AEP Support.

We encourage you to make the most of the AEP reform to improve the efficiency of your business. We also want to help you comply with your requirements to ensure biosecurity risk is managed effectively.

To assist with the implementation of phase 2, we have developed a series of task cards to help BIPs and accredited persons with their new import declaration lodgment requirements for NCCC and AEPCOMM. Download the task cards to assist you in using the new arrangement.




File size

Task card: Lodging NCCC consignments PDF2

226 KB

Task card: Lodging NCCC consignments DOCX265 KB
Task card: Lodging AEPCOMM consignments PDF 2212 KB
Task card: Lodging AEPCOMM consignments DOCX265 KB
Task card: Lodging non-standard consignments PDF 2

226 KB

Task card: Lodging non-standard consignments DOCX263 KB
Task card: Identifying and resolving an AEP error PDF 2

186 KB

Task card: Identifying and resolving an AEP error DOCX263 KB

If you have difficulty accessing these files, please visit web accessibility.

If you would like more information or have any questions about the changes to the broker approved arrangements please email the AEP support team.