Authorised Operator Expression of Interest Opens 6th February 2024

Authorised Operator Expression of Interest Opens 6th February 2024

19 Jan 2024

One of the proposals within the Border Target Operating Model (BTOM) is to explore the introduction of a delegated authority model for the checks of plants and plant products, which would allow eligible traders to manage their own SPS risks. This approach would be called ‘Authorised Operator Status’ (AOS).

AOS proposes to give responsibility to Authorised Operators (AOs) to carry out their own physical and identity checks, provided they meet certain eligibility criteria such as completion of prescribed training.

AOS is a proposal, and the decision on whether to implement AOS will be taken following pilot completion. The pilot will be open to GB businesses that trade with the European Union (EU) and Rest of World (ROW). Businesses must meet certain requirements to take part in the pilot such as being established in the UK for customs purposes and being a CP designated premises or in the last stages of the designation process.

Applications to take part in the AOS pilot will be open for eligible businesses on 6 February and you have until 12:00 on 08 March to submit an expression of interest.

Defra have published some further guidance on the AOS pilot to help you decide whether this is something your business would like to apply to take part in. Information you need to apply for Authorised Economic Operator status - GOV.UK (

They are also hosting an online session on Thursday 1 February at 3pm to go through further details of the pilot and answer any questions you may have. Sign up for the session.