The eCMR. Another step toward digitalising supply chains

Digital Gadgets

Did you know that CMR stands for Convention relative au contrat de transport international de marchandises par route, French for Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road.

A CMR waybill contains all the relevant information about a road freight shipment. It is the agreement between the shipper, the carrier, and the receiver. It regulates liability, damages, and compensation.

For a long time, the logistics industry was one of the biggest fans of paper. Everything needed to be printed, signed and stamped. In 2008 an electronic CMR waybill was introduced: the eCMR. Over the years, almost all European countries have ratified the eCMR. Germany was one of the countries that still hadn’t, but that has now changed. The eCMR enables the electronic exchange of the shipment information, eliminating the need for the paper-based CMR.

Germany Ratifies the eCMR

On September 7, the German government finally ratified the eCMR, which means that companies can now increase their digitalization when trading with and transporting to Germany.

Companies working with the eCMR will have better visibility over their shipments and can more easily keep track of re-usable packaging like totes or crates.

The Electronic Freight Transport Information

In 2025 the Electronic Freight Transport Information regulation will enter into force. This Regulation aims to encourage the digitalization of freight transport and logistics to reduce administrative costs, improve enforcement capabilities of competent authorities, and enhance the efficiency and sustainability of transportation.

The Importance of the eCMR

Especially when companies are using Limited Fiscal Representation the CMR, or in this case the eCMR, is a very important document. Through limited fiscal representation companies can import goods into the Netherlands using a zero percent VAT tariff. For this zero percent tariff to apply, you have to be able to prove where and to whom the goods were delivered. Such proof is preferably a signed CMR, or eCMR.

For more information on Limited Fiscal Representation and the importance of the (e)CMR, please read here.

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If you want more information about eCMRs or Limited Fiscal Representation, please contact one of our specialists. They are happy to answer any of your questions.