E-commerce assessments

WCO: E-Commerce web-corner at the World Customs Organization


The World Customs Organization (WCO) is an independent intergovernmental body whose mission is to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of Customs administrations.

WCO has launched an E-Commerce web-corner which aims to act as a single reference point for e-commerce related information. As part of this initiative, WCO’s multi-stakeholder Working Group on E-Commerce (WGEC) focuses on four identified work packages:

  • Trade Facilitation and Simplification of Procedures;
  • Safety and Security;
  • Revenue Collection;
  • Measurement and Analysis;

Download the latest version of the E-Commerce Package here. 

To know more about the WGEC activities

This inclusive and holistic approach enables WCO to address the challenges and needs of various stakeholders in the e-commerce chain when it comes to cross-border business-to-consumer (B2C) and consumer-to-consumer (C2C) transactions/shipments.

For whom

Decision makers
Private sector
Business Associations
Policy makers
Middle Managers

Services offered

  • Capacity Building
  • Policy Support
  • Technical Assistance
  • Training
  • Research

Meet the beneficiaries

Cross-Border E-Commerce : 2017 Study Report on WCO Members’ current practices and future initiatives

The WCO has carried out a short survey to collect members’ current practices and ongoing and/or future initiatives on cross-border low value e-commerce. Based on the survey findings, this study Report is divided into the following sections:

  • Key Survey Findings
  • Risk Management
  • Data Exchange/Cooperation with E-Commerce


  • Control and Enforcement
  • Revenue collection

Discover the Study Report here

Where should Value Added Taxe (VAT) be payed?

The WCO supported the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in exploring alternate models of revenue collection (duties and taxes) on low value shipments.

Results of the analysis undertaken by both Organizations were published last year as part of the OECD report titled “Addressing the Tax Challenges of the Digital Economy.”

Watch an example of how the OECD/G20 BEPS Project, including the above mentionned report, will revise the international tax rules.

Risk indicators for express and postal shipments by WCO

The Postal/Express Consignments Risk Indicators and Manual have been incorporated

into Volume 2 of the WCO Customs Risk Management Compendium. The indicators listed in the document could be used to select possible high risk movements/ consignments involving all types of Customs fraud (revenue protection, narcotics, security, IPR, etc.).

To know more

Success stories
WCO helping Receita Federal do Brasil moving from a manual control to a full IT based control system for postal items

The difficulties of sorting and tracking e-commerce purchased goods.

©Correio Braziliense



  • Simplification of Procedures for E Commerce
  • Revenue Collection
  • Cooperation between Customs/Express
  • Cooperation between Customs/Post

Key enablers

  • Creation of IT System
  • Private Sector (Political Will)
  • Exchange of information with stakeholders

Key stakeholders involved

  • Customs Administration
  • Postal Operator
  • Express Service Providers

Key achievements/benefits

  • More reliable and effective Customs control over inbound and outbound flow of parcels (Post and express services)
  • Carrying out effective risk analysis with reliable and advance electronic information on all parcels.

Most of the gains are based on this premise.

  • Improved Revenue collections
  • Enforcement – effective combatting of tax fraud and drug smuggling
  • A viable economic solution for increasing E-Commerce parcels through Post
  • The customers/buyers do not need to contact Customs, as all requirements including payments and submission of documents are done through ECT or through express service companies own IT systems

To know more

WCO supporting Korea Customs Service (KCS) with the establishment of a new e-commerce legislation


  • Create Customs legislation on e-commerce in alignment with existing legal structure

Key enablers

  • Changes on legal framework

Key stakeholders involved

  • Customs Administration
  • E-Vendors/Paltforms

Key achievements/benefits

Among other amendments, a Special Enforcement Decree in the following areas:

  1. Goods or companies subject to special customs clearance;
  2. Methods of and procedures for import and export declarations;
  3. Methods of paying customs duties, etc.;
  4. Methods of inspecting goods;
  5. Other matters deemed necessary by the Commissioner of the Korea Customs Service

Setting up a new method of cooperation between the Slovenian Customs and Post


  • Simplification of Procedures for e-Commerce
  • Safety & Security improvement
  • Cooperation between Customs/Post

Key enablers

  • Changes on legal framework

Key stakeholders involved

  • Customs Administration
  • Postal Operator

Key achievements/benefits

  • A substantial reduction in the delivery time (from several weeks or days to a few hours).
  • The system supports the entire process including the electronic risk analysis, detection and elimination of dangerous consignments and enables full paperless business operations.
  • It enables the consignees to track their consignments.
  • There is a lower risk of corruption.
  • It has led to the improvement of the control and the traceability
  • With the new procedure, there are greater possibilities of data analysis and taxes.
  • The new procedure also allows simplification of payment of duties and taxes.
  • Customs can focus only on risk management and controls and have a higher efficiency of operations.
  • The advantage for the Postal operations: higher performance and greater speed, transparency, additional revenue and finally total control over the process (Location, status, and history).
  • With electronic data capturing capability, there is an improved quality of data.