Harmonising and standardising the Data Model that needs to be interchanged between its member states, while ensuring a very hight level of security of the international logistic chainde, That is one of the major goal targetted by the World Customs Organisation (WCO) in relationship with the UN Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UNCEFACT).
Its in this context that the said Centre has developped the EDIFACT standard (the standard for Electronic Data Interchange for Administration, Commerce and Transport), whose main achievement is the adoption of the CUSCAR message format (CUSCAR stands for CUSTOM CARGO), in order to enable the translation of electronic data in an understandable and readable language from one information system to another.
The principle behind the translating engine is based on a technical componant that, depending on the version and family of the EDIFACT file entered in the system, releases an other electronic XML file type, the XML being, nowadays the standard language that is the most used within the EDI systems (Electronic Data Interchange) of public administrations such as the Customs, as well as private sector operators and organisations evolving within the international trade area.
*EDIFACT= Electronic Data Interchange for Administration, Commerce and Transport.
Below CUSCAR explanation and code used by the Senegal’s Customs administration.
Source CUSCAR files : UN/EDIFACT – Copyright 1995-2000 United Nations