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Automated Export System (AES)

The Automated Export System (AES) is the system used by U.S. exporters to electronically declare their international exports, known as Electronic Export Information (EEI), to the Census Bureau to help compile U.S. export and trade statistics. This information is also shared with the Bureau of Industry and Security, the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, and other federal agencies involved in monitoring and validating U.S. exports. Formerly this declaration was only made on paper on the Shipper’s Export Declaration form.

Up until November 30, 2015, an exporter could file the EEI electronically to the AES using the AESDirect website, the AESPCLink software, or other AES-compatible applications. However, after the 2015 launch of the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE), all legacy AESDirect and other users must register and submit the EEI to ACE. After an EEI/SED is successfully filed and processed, the shipper receives an Internal Transaction Number (ITN) to put on the shipping documents, as a confirmation to any government agent inspecting the cargo prior to departure.

In most cases a shipper can also authorize its freight forwarder, courier company, or other third-party logistics agent to file the EEI on its behalf