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Customs specialist: Questions & answers

1. What are the benefits of certification?

The UCC requires evidence of the practical or professional qualifications directly related to the activity carried out. Until now, neither the EU nor the respective customs administrations have issued any binding guidelines. The AWA certificate proves that you have been trained in subjects that correspond to your professional activities. 

2. Will my customs administration accept the certificate as proof of practical or professional qualification in accordance with the UCC?

As yet, the German customs administration does not require proof of professional qualifications because it has not yet accredited or recognised any educational or training institution in this respect. Instead, it refers to the updated guidelines on AEO. These state that private training providers can use the EU Customs CFW for the private sector as a guide. The AWA Customs Specialist certificate is based on the EU Customs CFW.

3. Which AWA seminars/training courses can I choose?

You can choose distance-learning courses, inhouse trainings, webinars or seminars from the complete AWA portfolio for Germany and Austria that reflect your needs. However, special events such as conferences, the Insider Forum, the International VAT Summit, discussion forums, etc. do not count towards certification as “AWA Customs Specialist.”

4. Do I have to pass a special test to obtain the certification?

No. You must have completed at least 15 days of training (see also question 7).

5. Are AWA seminars/training courses attended in the past taken into account?

Yes, previously attended AWA seminars/training courses (Germany and Austria) are taken into account. There is no time limit.

6. When do i have to attend the seminars "Union Customs Code – UCC compact" and "UCC – Intensive Workshop" or "Customs Refresher Course" i order to obtain the certification? 

If you are active in the customs field, up-to-date knowledge of the UCC is mandatory. You must document the three seminar days "UCC" or "Customs Refresher" if you wish to have seminars attended in the past taken into account (i. e. seminars whose contents reflect pre-UCC customs law).

7. How many seminars/training courses do I need to attend in order to obtain the certificate?

You must prove that you have completed no less than 15 days of training in accordance with the following equivalence guide:

Seminars = 1 to 10 days.
1 distance learning unit = 0.7 seminar days.
1 webinar = 0.1 seminar days.
1 day in-house training = 1 seminar day.
0.5 days of in-house training = 0.5 seminar days.

Please note that special events such as conferences, Insider Forum, International VAT Summit, discussion forums, etc. do not qualify for certification.

9. Does AWA recognise the courses offered by other training providers?

The “AWA Customs Specialist” is an internal AWA certificate. The AWA is the first specialist provider of customs and foreign trade seminars in Germany to be certified under DIN ISO 29993:2017. This norm certifies high quality standards. We cannot judge whether other seminar providers have developed their learning services in accordance with the EU Customs CFW. In this respect, we are unable to recognise the seminars/training courses offered by other providers.

10. How can I apply for the certificate?

Collect your AWA certificates and, if possible, scan them as one file in either PDF or JPG formats (the maximum file size is 10 MB). You can send us up to five files. Then go to the following website:

Enter your personal information and postal address for the AWA Customs Specialist certificate in the fields provided. In addition, name the AWA seminars/training courses you attended which you wish included in your certificate together with the date. The title and date of these seminars/training courses will be stated on your certificate. Once you have completed the form you can upload the corresponding PDF or JPG file(s).

If you have any questions about the AWA Customs specialist that are not answered in the FAQs, please contact Tanja Glaß by phone at +49.251.83 275 06 or by e-mail at