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TSW WCO3 Mandatory Adoption Date

08.33am 23 March 2018

In September 2017 Customs and MPI confirmed 1 July 2018 is the mandatory date for moving onto the WCO3-format for cargo reporting and clearance messages, except the Inward Cargo Report (ICR) which is dependent on completion of a pilot phase. Information on the ICR pilot is provided below.

With over four years’ warning and only three months to go, all submitters should be using the other WCO3 messages, or have a clear plan for switching over before the deadline. The sooner you switch, the more time you have to get familiar with the changes, bed them in as your normal business process, and enable the benefits across the supply chain.

Download the WCO3 Messages Summary for details of the message types. Details on what you need to do are set out below.

Commercial Software Users

Commercial software providers are either already fully WCO3-capable or well into the testing and approval process (apart from ICR – see below). We are pushing software providers to shift their clients onto WCO3 as quickly as possible.  This has seen WCO3 transactions jump from 27% in January to 36% now, and we are on track for a sharp rise to at least 50% by end of March.  Check with your software provider on their WCO3 status, what training they provide, and when they will stop supporting the old messages.

CusWeb Users

We will shortly be contacting all remaining CusWeb users about moving onto TSW Online before the 1 July 2018 deadline, and how we can support you to do so.  We are talking with B2BE NZ Ltd, which provides CusWeb, about shutting this website down from that date.

In-house System Clients

We are in regular contact with IT developers for the brokers, freight forwarders, express couriers, shipping lines and airlines that use in-house systems.  Most are well into development for WCO3 mandating.  We are contacting management of the companies who are not to set out the implications of not complying on time.

ICR mandatory date

We’ve been piloting the ICR since November 2017, which flushed out a few material bugs.  The last of these is resolved in a system update planned for 22 April 2018.  We will allow a couple of months for software providers, in-house system developers and port companies to complete changes to their systems, before we complete the pilot and allow all submitters to use.  We will then set a hard date in 2018 for everyone to use the WCO3 ICR, prior to shutting down the legacy system. 

The ICR replaces the old ECI message and is used for:

  • Requesting clearance (write off) of low value import consignments.
  • International Transhipment Requests (ITRs), allowing the goods to be loaded on the export craft.
  • Pre-arrival reporting by carriers of cargo and empty containers on board an inbound ship or aircraft (airlines must include house bill level details)
  • Two new requirements that are not yet being introduced:
    • Pre-arrival reporting by sea freight consolidators of house bill level details for LCL/FAK shipments landing in New Zealand
    • Domestic Transhipment Requests.

Advance Notice of Arrival / Advance Notice of Departure

These lodgements are not subject to the mandatory date and the pilot is currently on hold while we focus on mandating the other messages, which will enable us to shut down the legacy system.  We will keep pilot partners and shipping agents informed on the plan for these two lodgements.

Information Sessions and Other Help

The WCO3 Messages Summary along with TSW Fact sheets explain the WCO3 messages and requirements - the ICR Fact Sheet will be added shortly. In the meantime, if you have feedback or would like more information on this update, please email