(8th JUNE 1971)


HAVING REGARD to Recommendation No. B-3 of the Seventh Session of the Facilitation Division of the International Civil Aviation Organization, as adopted by the Council of that Organization in December 1968, relating to the establishment at international airports of dual-channel systems for speedy clearance of inbound baggage;

HAVING REGARD to Recommendation No. 11 adopted by the Second Intermediate Session of the European Civil Aviation Conference in July 1969 on the dual-channel or red/green system;

DESIRING to contribute to the efforts to improve the flow of passenger traffic at international airports;

CONSIDERING that this aim can be achieved by introducing a simplified procedure, based on the dual-channel system, for the Customs control of passengers and their baggage;

CONSIDERING that such a system can be adopted without reducing the effectiveness of the control and that it enables Customs authorities to deal efficiently with an increasing number of Customs staff;

CONSIDERING that harmonization of the features of this system, as between the various countries, is essential to its smooth operation;

RECOMMENDS that Members of the Council and members of the United Nations Organization or its specialized agencies, and Customs or Economic Unions introduce, at their major international airports, in close co-operation with the airport operators and other agencies concerned, the dual-channel system outlined below for the clearance inwards of passengers and their baggage :

1. The system shall allow the passengers to choose between two types of channel :

(a) one (green channel) for passengers having with them no goods or only goods which can be admitted free of import duties and taxes and which are not subject to import prohibitions or restrictions; and

(b) the other (red channel) for other passengers.

2. Each channel shall be clearly and distinctively marked so that the choice between them can easily be understood by passengers. The basic distinctive marking shall be :

(a) for the channel referred to under 1.(a), green, in the shape of a regular octagon, and the words "NOTHING TO DECLARE" ("RIEN A DECLARER");

(b) for the channel referred to under 1.(b), red, in the shape of a square, and the words "GOODS TO DECLARE" ("MARCHANDISES A DECLARER").

In addition, the channels should be identified by an inscription including the word "CUSTOMS" ("DOUANE").

3. The texts referred to in paragraph 2. shall be in English and/or French and in any other language or languages deemed useful for the airport concerned.

4. Passengers must be sufficiently well informed to choose between the channels. For this purpose it is important :

(a) that passengers be informed about the functioning of the system and about the descriptions and quantities of goods they may have with them when using the green channel. This may be done by means of posters or panels at the airport or by means of leaflets available to the public at the airport or distributed through tourist agencies, airlines and other interested bodies;

(b) that the route to the channels be clearly signposted.

5. The channels shall be located beyond the baggage delivery area so that passengers have all their baggage with them when choosing their channel. Moreover, the channels shall be so arranged that the passenger flow from that area to the exits from the airport is as direct as possible.

6. The distance between the baggage delivery area and the entrances to the channels shall be sufficient to allow passengers to decide which channel to choose and to move into that channel without causing congestion.

7. In the green channel passengers shall not be subject to any Customs formalities but the Customs may make spot-checks; in the red channel passengers shall accomplish the formalities required by the Customs;

POINTS OUT that the dual-channel system is not necessarily incompatible with the application of other controls, for example, exchange control, unless the relevant regulations require full control of the passengers and their baggage;

REQUESTS Members of the Council and Members of the United Nations Organization or its specialized agencies, and Customs or Economic Unions who accept this Recommendation to notify to the Secretary General :

(a) their acceptance and the date from which they will apply the Recommendation;

(b) the names of the airports where the dual-channel system is applied.

The Secretary General will transmit this information to the Customs Administrations of Members, to the Secretary General of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and to the Director General of the International Air Transport Association (IATA). He will also transmit it to the Customs administrations of the members of the United Nations Organization or its specialized agencies and to Customs or Economic Unions which have accepted this Recommendation.

* The Customs Co-operation Council is the official name of the World Customs Organization.