Level 4 Full Certificate in Advanced Customs Compliance (UK)

The Academy recognises holders of this award to be 'Certified Customs Practitioners'.

On successful completion of this qualification you will have a comprehensive understanding of customs processes and procedures - including import, export and special procedures.

You will gain a sound understanding of the core compliance areas of classification, origin, valuation and duty calculation and will gain sound knowledge of import and export declaration procedures and requirements.

You will also gain advanced knowledge of excise duties and procedures, export licensing controls and AEO requirements.

By the end of the award, you will feel fully confident working in an international trade environment, and have a clear awareness of the resources available to you to effectively manage customs risk.

Note: this qualification requires the completion of the six Level 3 modules plus the three ‘capstone’ modules: Authorised Economic Operator status, excise duties and procedures and export licensing controls.

If you have already completed the Level 3 Certificate in Customs Compliance you will only study the additional three 'capstone' modules to achieve the Level 4 Certificate. To apply for this “Level 4 Capstone” course please complete this Application Form:

Throughout the course you will have access to a tutor to answer enquiries related to the syllabus, and to provide explanations and further reading. All our tutors are appropriately qualified and have extensive experience working within the customs profession.

Students of this course will also receive free access to the Legislation Finder and Declaration Portal tools.

For more information about all the qualifications we offer and why you should study with us, either download our brochure or contact [email protected].

Entry requirements

No formal qualifications are required for entry into this course.


You will acquire knowledge of the customs law as it currently stands and an insight into what has changed since Brexit. This includes an introduction to the Union Customs Code and related legislation.

This task is greatly simplified through the use of our web-based Legislation Finder tool.

You will gain a practical understanding of the role and application of the various customs processes and procedures with which international traders are required to comply.

These include rules relating to the way in which goods may be imported, exported, stored, processed and released for sale.

We explore the concepts and procedures relating to the Harmonized System, and the knowledge and skills required to effectively classify goods for customs purposes.

This includes the classification structure, process and the use of online databases.

Here we examine how origin is established, including preferential and non-preferential origin and the importance of origin in determining the conditions under which goods may be traded internationally.

In this topic we examine the way in which imports and exports are valued for customs purposes and the way in which terms of trade influence the valuation process.

Here you will apply the knowledge gained in earlier topics to learn how to prepare and submit customs declarations for exports and imports, including for safety and security purposes.

Particular emphasis is placed on Customs Procedure Codes.

This task is greatly simplified through the use of our web-based Declaration Portal tool.

In this topic we introduce:

  • The WCO SAFE Framework of Standards & international AEO schemes
  • Examine AEO requirements in in the UK / EU including AEO-C & AEO-S and benefits of each
  • Applying for AEO status including who can apply, how to apply and an overview of AEO criteria
  • How to meet the practical standards of competence criteria
  • Consider AEO and Trusted Trader status in a post-Brexit landscape

Here we examine:

  • Excise duties, procedures and regulations
  • Goods that are subject to excise duties
  • UK excise laws & control
  • Import & export procedures for excise goods
  • UK & EU excise movements via the Excise Movement Control System (EMCS)
  • Excise authorisations for producers & manufacturers.

Here we examine:

  • Export licensing controls and the different types of export licences
  • The concept of dual-use goods
  • Controls over trade in military goods
  • Export Control Classification Numbers (ECCN)
  • How to check for a valid export licence
  • The various types of licences including the Open General Export Licence (OGEL), Single Individual Export Licence (SIEL), Open Individual Export Licence (OIEL), and EU General Export Authorisations (EUGEA)
Study commitment

As a guide, you should expect to study for a total of around 250 hours to complete all modules.

The course must be completed within one year, but the usual period of study is 9 months.

These are recommended hours only, as the completion time will vary from student to student.


You will be expected to answer a series of questions as you progress through each module of the course. Questions take a variety of forms, including multiple choice, multiple response, fill in the blanks, drag and drop and hotspot.

Once you have completed all the modules, you will receive a Certificate showing the grade you have obtained:

  • Pass:            60% to 74%
  • Credit:         75% to 84%
  • Distinction: 85% and above.

If you do not achieve a score of 60% or higher, you will need to undertake a supplementary assessment at the end of the course.


The cost of the qualification is £1470, which includes one year student membership of the Institute of Export & International Trade.

Note: for those who have already completed the Level 3 Certificate in Customs Compliance, the cost is reduced to £490.

For the discount to be applied in relation to the Level 4 CAPSTONE qualification the sponsoring-organisation  must confirm that the proposed student is an existing full time employee (of the sponsoring organisation).  In addition the booking must be made in the same name as the original organisation that booked the student/s onto the Level 3 Certificate in Customs Compliance.

If the Level 3 Certificate in Customs Compliance had been purchased & completed by a private individual (not sponsored by a company or organisation) on providing evidence (payment + Qualification-Certificate) of a successful Award the individual can request for the discount being applied to the Level 4 CAPSTONE.

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