The ITAIDE project is tackling customs, security and administration with a broad-front approach. It is just as well because it is an enormous problem, and an intractable one. The Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) was set-up in the 1970s to create electronic documents for transport, yet 70% of documentation is on paper.
Customs has recently stepped up security which usually increases red tape and paperwork – an inherently error-prone process with names, quantities and other essential information getting mixed up. Incorrect data could even be vulnerable to a terrorist attack.
Customs and business are well aware of this administrative burden, as the EDI effort shows, but up to now attempts to solve the problem rested on replacing paper documents with electronic ones, rather than a fundamental redesign of the whole system.
ITAIDE is addressing this system redesign by tackling three fundamental aims of the e-Customs Strategy of the European Commission: creating a single customs window, establishing Authorised Economic Operators and creating interoperability across Europe.Not reinventing the wheel
Second, once fully up and running, some businesses will be registered as ‘Authorised Economic Operators’. “This [is] for operators who have sophisticated enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems who can show they can securely track their products,” says ITAIDE’s coordinator Yao-Hua Tan of Free University Amsterdam’s Information Management Group. This makes sense because customs and businesses share a common aim: intimate knowledge of the supply chain. “If businesses share this information with the tax office, then the tax office can outsource control to the businesses,” he explains.
It means businesses essentially become their own taxman. “There’s huge advantages for both customs and businesses. Customs essentially recruit businesses into their efforts, and businesses get a green-lane treatment where they are much less checked,” notes Tan.
Trickiest of all, though, will perhaps be developing interoperability between the widely diverse business and customs computer systems around Europe. Here, ITAIDE is not reinventing the wheel. “We’re not creating a new IT platform to work across Europe, rather we’re creating a suite of redesigned tools, web services and standards to make all the different systems work together.”
It is a tough technical challenge, but with 54 months 11 partners (including such big names as SAP, Nordea and IBM) in seven countries, and a total budget of €7 million, €5.8 million of which comes from the EU, ITAIDE has the resources to do it.Social and technical solution
There are frequent feedback loops of the ITAIDE results with EU-DG Taxation and Customs, UN/CEFACT and the World Customs Organisation. So what will a new customs service look like?
ITAIDE is just into its second year of work, but it has already developed systems that have been piloted successfully by customs services in Britain, the Netherlands and the USA. The project set up a 'Beer Living Lab', a live, small-scale test of some of the technologies they are working on. In the test, containers were fitted with TREC, tamper-resistant embedded controllers that are electronic seals for tracking the movement and delivery of a container.
“In the past, a document would be sent from the tax office to the exporter, the exporter to transporter, transporter to importer, from the importer to its home tax office, and then back to the tax office in the exporting country to show the consignment had arrived. With TREC, all that happens automatically,” remarks Tan. ITAIDE successfully demonstrated that technology could solve the problem while enhancing security.
Christian Nielsen | alfa
New players, standardization and digitalization for more rail freight transport
16.07.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)
A helping (Sens)Hand
11.04.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO
What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.
Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...
Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.
Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...
New Project SNAPSTER: Novel luminescent materials by encapsulating phosphorescent metal clusters with organic liquid crystals
Nowadays energy conversion in lighting and optoelectronic devices requires the use of rare earth oxides.
Scientists have discovered the first synthetic material that becomes thicker - at the molecular level - as it is stretched.
Researchers led by Dr Devesh Mistry from the University of Leeds discovered a new non-porous material that has unique and inherent "auxetic" stretching...
Scientists from the Theory Department of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science (CFEL) in Hamburg have shown through theoretical calculations and computer simulations that the force between electrons and lattice distortions in an atomically thin two-dimensional superconductor can be controlled with virtual photons. This could aid the development of new superconductors for energy-saving devices and many other technical applications.
The vacuum is not empty. It may sound like magic to laypeople but it has occupied physicists since the birth of quantum mechanics.
10.12.2018 | Event News
06.12.2018 | Event News
03.12.2018 | Event News
10.12.2018 | Life Sciences
10.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
10.12.2018 | Life Sciences