Australian Trusted Trader

On 1 July 2016, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection’s (the Department) operational arm, the Australian Border Force (ABF), launched its new trade facilitation programme—Australian Trusted Trader (ATT).

Industry has responded strongly with expressions of interest to join the programme, and the Department’s partnership with the Export Council of Australia (ECA) has helped to spread the word to achieve this positive result.

What is ATT?

  • To help support Australian international businesses, the ABF implemented a new voluntary trade facilitation initiative – ATT. 

  • ATT is free to join and is open to all Australian exporters, importers and service providers that are active in international supply chains. 

  • ATT sets the new benchmark for global Authorised Economic Operator programmes by recognising businesses with secure supply chains and compliant trade practices, and rewarding accredited businesses with a range of trade facilitation benefits. This includes a dedicated Account Manager, a lighter touch at the border through differentiated examinations, priority trade services and use of the ATT logo. Duty deferral and streamlined reporting will be available from 2017/2018 financial year.

  • To be eligible for the programme, businesses must have an Australian Business Number (ABN), two years activity in international trade, and an ability to demonstrate financial solvency. 

Mutual Recognition Agreement

An MRA is a formal arrangement between customs agencies that recognise supply chain security programmes and provides reciprocal benefits to the other country's trusted partners. MRAs also provide border agencies with greater end-to-end assurance over imports and exports.

The Department signed its first MRA with New Zealand Customs Service (NZCS) at the World Customs Organization’s Council sessions in Brussels on 15 July 2016. This provides trusted Trans-Tasman exporters with fast-tracked customs processing. Members of the ATT programme and the NZCS Secure Export Scheme will benefit from the arrangement which is anticipated to allow up to 13 per cent of New Zealand import volume to Australia—totalling $3 billion—to be facilitated, along with $7.5 billion of Australian exports by 2020.

At the Council sessions, the Department also formally agreed to work towards mutual recognition of its respective supply chain security programmes with the Canada Border Service Agency, Hong Kong Customs and Excise and Singapore Customs. These agreements were made through the signings of Statements of Intent and Action plans. The Department also reaffirmed cooperation with China with the signing of the latest schedule of the Strategic Partnership Program.

The Department looks forward to working with its regional partners to commence MRA discussions and validations of each other’s programmes.

Accredited Trusted Traders

On 19 August 2016, the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, the Hon Peter Dutton MP hosted an event to celebrate the successful opening of ATT. Minister Dutton acknowledged the first businesses to become accredited Trusted Traders: Teys Australia Beenleigh Pty Ltd, Target Australia Pty. Ltd., Techwool Trading Pty. Ltd. and Pacific Brands Holdings Pty Ltd. The Department is also pleased to announce that IBM Australia Ltd has joined this list of Australia’s first Trusted Traders. Congratulations to these businesses on this significant achievement.

At the launch, Minister Dutton; the Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, the Hon Keith Pitt MP; and the Commissioner for the ABF, Roman Quaedvlieg, all emphasised the programme's significance in the Government's trade reform agenda and the change in the way we do business.

Useful tools and links

For more information on ATT visit

More information on ATT benefits

ATT factsheets available as a printable toolkit

Case studies on two Trusted Traders, Teys Australia Beenleigh Pty Ltd and Pacific Brands Holding Pty Ltd are available on our website.

Interested businesses are encouraged to apply as soon as possible at to secure their place in the queue. Any questions about the application process can be emailed to

Any questions on the programme or our engagement activities can be emailed to

To find out more about Australian Trusted Trader, visit



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Ed Serrano
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