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Entry Summary Declaration – Import Control System 2 (ICS2)

ICS2 is the EU's new customs security and safety programme – Import Control System 2 (ICS2). It will be implemented in the period 2021–2024.


To increase safety, the EU is expanding its requirements, which means that all cargo transport from a third country must submit an Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) electronically. The term 'third country' refers to any country outside the EU's customs security zone. This security zone is comprised of the customs territories of EU member states, Norway, Switzerland and Northern Ireland.

Through the EU's security system, ICS2 (Import Control System release 2), Norwegian Customs receive and assess ENS about goods entering the security zone. All countries in the security zone must be connected to ICS2. The obligation to provide ENS applies to all modes of transport – road, air, sea and rail. Not all modes of transport are implemented at the same time; the system will be implemented in three releases.


The EU requires that Norway develop and implement a solution to protect the "safety and security" of the security zone.

In this context, "safety" refers to serious threats to the population's health and well-being or to the environment within the security zone. This includes the spread of diseases or contaminated goods, goods containing a high concentration of carcinogenic substances, drugs or other elements that pose a health risk.

The term "security" refers to risks or threats with implications for the security of the zone. This includes weapons; explosives; dual-use goods, i.e. goods that have civilian purposes, but that may also have military applications; and biological, chemical and radiological and nuclear cargo. Through ICS2, Norwegian Customs get improved data quality and access to more information, which will enable us to control more objects. This improves the experience of law-abiding parties and poses a considerable challenge for those with more nefarious purposes.

For whom?

Over the next few years, anyone who processes and transports cargo, express and postal consignments from third countries will be affected by ICS2. The consequence of not using ICS2 as ENS will either mean that one cannot transport third-country cargo into the security zone, or that one must use a party that can submit advance cargo information on behalf of the carrier.

When is ICS2 implemented?

ICS2 is implemented in three releases:

  • Release 1: Postal operators and express carriers shipping cargo by air from third countries into the EU, Norway or Switzerland
    Implemented from 15 March 2021

  • Release 2: Air cargo
    Implemented from 1 March 2023
    In ICS2 release 2, the system is expanded to include all air cargo from third countries. This means all carriers must submit ENS for all cargo transported by air from third countries to the security zone. ENS is required both pre-loading and pre-arrival.

  • Release 3: Sea, road and rail transport
    Implemented from 1 March 2024
    This release covers sea, road and rail transport, which means that all carriers must submit ENS for all cargo from third countries, regardless of the mode of transport.

ICS2 is implemented in three releases, as illustrated here:

Contact us

Send us an e-mail if this affects you or if you have questions about ICS2.