135-2020 - eCert exchange for New Zealand now paperless

31 August 2020

Who does this notice affect?

Customs brokers and importers who import goods from New Zealand that require phytosanitary and/or sanitary certification.

What has changed?

Effective 31 August 2020, the department has transitioned the current eCert exchange with New Zealand’s Ministry for Primary Industries (NZ MPI) to a paperless eCert exchange. This means NZ MPI will no longer issue original paper phytosanitary or sanitary certificates.

This change applies to the following lodgement types:

  • Full Import Declarations (FID)
  • Long Form Self-Assessed Clearance (SCL)
  • Import declarations processed under class 19.2 Automatic entry processing for commodities (AEPCOMM) approved arrangement
  • Short Form Self Assessed Clearance (SAC)
  • Cargo Report SAC (CRS)
  • Goods imported to Norfolk Island
  • Goods directed for inspection and/or to Post Entry Quarantine (PEQ) for isolation

The NZ exporter will provide importers and brokers with the certificate number, which must be provided to the department. The department will receive the eCert and will assess the eCert where required for import clearance.

Please refer to the Electronic Certification (eCert) for Imports webpage for further information on this transition to eCert paperless for NZ MPI, including lodgement information.

NZ exporters are able to provide a copy of the phytosanitary certificate or extract of the sanitary certificate that will be used for the clearance of goods lodged under Automatic entry processing for commodities (AEPCOMM). Accredited persons utilising AEPCOMM must ensure they obtain this documentation prior to conducting assessments and lodgement under AEPCOMM.

Importers and brokers submitting entries to the department may request the copy or extract to confirm all import requirements have been met prior to clearance, however, this is not mandatory as the eCert will be received by the department and will be used for import clearance.

Note: Original paper certificates will continue to be issued for zoosanitary certificates (issued for live animals and reproductive material), and goods arriving via accompanied passenger baggage and mail that require phytosanitary or sanitary certification.

Further information

Please contact eCertimports@agriculture.gov.au if you have any questions.

Last reviewed: 31 August 2020
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