EMCS will soon get a new, major update. The so-called EMCS Phase 4 will be brought live on 13/02/2023. This is a big bang; the previous version of EMCS will no longer be addressable. Stream Software has now started developing this update, and will have the application compliant by the target date.

The biggest change is the digitization of the SHD (Simplified Guided Document). It concerns the "excise duty paid" procedure between operators (B2B procedure). So we are moving towards an e-VAD: the electronic Simplified Administrative Document. Since you undoubtedly work with parties in other member states, we give you the translation of this new electronic document below:

- EN = e-VAD: electronic Simplified Administrative Document

- FR= e-SAD: Document Administratif Électronique Simplifié

- DE = e-BVD: vereinfachtes elektronisches Verwaltungsdokument

- EN = e-SAD: electronic Simplified Administrative Document.

The SHD is mostly used for movements under the "excise duty paid" procedure. The volume concerning these documents is much lower than the use of the known e-AD. It mainly concerns movements of alcohol or alcoholic beverages, where the excise duty has already been paid, and where there is still movement to another (B2B) party within the Union. If all conditions are met, the consignor can obtain a possible refund. Whereas in the past this was done under a paper document (VGD), from 13/02/2023 this will be possible electronically.

Changes within Customs Streamliner

As already reported, this phase will be integrated and built into our application. We provide an additional message type '3'for the creation of the e-VAD. Also, the underlying code lists will be provided with a necessary update.

Other changes will be included within EMCS Phase 4. Some examples:

- The designation and size of the data fields gross and net mass are aligned with the Customs Data Model, based on the UCC

- Product code S600 (completely denatured alcohol) is added

- On item line, two new fields are added: 'Maturation time or age of products' as well as the specification of language

- Addition or enhancement of specific messages (IE837 - IE802 - IE881)


A SEED number is associated with each excise permit. With the development of EMCS Phase 4, 4 new SEED permits are also being created. Among the permanent permits, "Certified Consignor" and "Certified Consignee" are new. Both are also new under the temporary permits. An economic operator can hold up to five different types of permanent licenses. With respect to the temporary licenses, a maximum of six per year are licensed.

It should be noted that the new permits '(temporary) certified sender/addressee' can only be delivered from 13/02/2023 (target go-live).


From the Netherlands, we received less good news earlier. Via a parliamentary letter, the Dutch Customs Authorities informed the Lower House of the state of affairs regarding the delayed implementation of the Horizontal Excise Directive 2020. The earlier target of 13/02/2023 will not be met in the Netherlands, a temporary (automatic) emergency procedure is foreseen. A converter (translator) will temporarily switch between the old and new EMCS, which should cause little or no inconvenience to the trade. Regarding the SHD document, a paper emergency procedure will be allowed. New target is 01/10/2023.

More information regarding the chamber letter can be found via here.

We will continue to inform everyone about the situation in the Netherlands as well and as soon as possible.

Additional info

On 26/10/2022, the National Forum (NaForNa - BE) organized an open forum regarding EMCS Phase 4. The presentation of this session can be found via the following link: https://www.naforna.be/nl/system/files/20221026_Open_Forum_EMCS.pdf

On 1/2/2023, an update was published to the Customs FAQ page.

The Dutch version can be found at the following url: https://financien.belgium.be/nl/douane_accijnzen/ondernemingen/applicaties-da/emcs/faq-emcs-fase-4#q2

The French version at https://finances.belgium.be/fr/douanes_accises/entreprises/applications-da/emcs/faq-emcs-phase-4

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