What is AIP and how does it work?
3. Under AIP, the processing of strategic commodities licence applications and the issuance of licences are streamlined and expedited.
(A) Eligible types of strategic commodities
(B) Eligible companies
(a) register with TID and have an E-Account under the Strategic Commodities Control System Website ("SC Website") (for details, please refer to “Open an E-Account”);
(b) be a frequent applicant of strategic commodities licences, for example, issued with at least 100 licences covering the AIP-eligible strategic commodities in the past 12-month period; and
(c) have a good compliance record as demonstrated by, for example -
(ii) receiving no more than ten warning letters involving strategic commodities issued by TID on average per year in the past 24-month period.
(C) Application Procedures
6. The application procedures for AIP generally include the following:
(a) Company to contact TID to indicate interest.
(b) TID to conduct a preliminary assessment and if the company’s eligibility is confirmed, send an AIP application form to the company.
(c) The applicant to complete and submit to TID the application form and the relevant supporting documents about the detailed information on the import and export shipments to be covered by AIP which includes, for example, information on the products (i.e., brands and model numbers), the foreign exporting countries/places, destinations, foreign exporters, consignees, end-users, etc.
(d) TID to conduct a comprehensive examination and review on the applicant, products, entities, countries/places under application.
(e) TID to inform the applicant of the result and decision, i.e., whether the AIP application is to be approved and if it is, the to-be-approved products, entities and countries/places which may not necessarily be the same as those under application.
(f) The applicant to complete and submit to TID the undertaking and declaration at Appendix A.
(g) TID to issue an Approval-in-Principle letter (“AIP letter”) to the applicant which will set out: (i) the approved products, entities and countries/places; and (ii) the validity period (normally one year) of the subject AIP.
(D) Making and submitting licence applications under AIP
7. Same as all strategic commodities licence applications, making and submitting a licence application within the scope as set out on an AIP letter (“AIP’s licence application”) must also be done on a pre-shipment basis. Applicants can do it electronically and efficiently via their E-Accounts under SC website.
(E) Process and Issuance of Licences under AIP
8. Upon receipt, an AIP’s licence application is processed by TID’s system automatically and will be approved within the same day, regardless of it is a working or non-working day, if no complication is involved.
9. After an AIP’s licence application is approved, a notification message and a softcopy of the licence (“AIP’s licence”) will be sent to the applicant electronically. AIP’s licences can be printed out by the applicants themselves. It is therefore not necessary for applicants to collect the approved AIP’s licences at TID.
10. Specimens of AIP’s licences are at Appendices B and C. Compared to other strategic commodities licences, the specific features of AIP’s licences include1:
(a) no application receipt number is printed;
(b) an Approval-in-Principle agreement number is at the lower left-hand corner on all pages;
(c) the background is in light grey colour with concealed watermark showing "Trade and Industry Department" in Italics; and
(d) a licence access number and a QR code are at the upper left-hand corner and at the lower right-hand corner.
Strategic Trade Controls Branch
Trade and Industry Department
1 Each AIP licence issued on or before 13 January 2022 bears a visible digital signature signed by an electronic certificate of Trade and Industry Department at the bottom of the first page. This feature would no longer exist in AIP licences issued thereafter.