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What is ITN, and what are its applications and significance in export?

It is a well-known fact that when any individual travels around the globe, they require a passport that can verify their identity or the identity of the individual. It is the passport that provides all the required and important details that permit an individual to move from one country to another. So, in the same way, the same kind of verification or confirmation is needed in the area of export transactions. Therefore, one has to use an ITN. ITN is similar to a document of identity for an export shipment. The ITN number, or internal transaction number, is the number that you get that confirms or supports your EEI, or electronic export information, that has been taken or accepted in the AES, or automated export system.

How ITN Appears

AES direct filers will also receive an email with the ITN number following acceptance. Another thing that you ought to know is that the ITN number will start with an X and will have the year, the month, the day of acceptance, and a 6-digit random number. For clearing customs at the place of export and transferring the shipment along its way or journey, the ITN should appear on the following documents where it is applicable: the airway bill, the bill of lading, other commercial loading documents, export shipping instructions, and so on. It is not like international travel, and there are some exceptions to the ITN number requirement. Let’s look at the exceptions.

ITN Number Exceptions and Importance

There are some exceptions, such as if the export transaction is valued at or less than $2500, or if it is a non-licensed export transaction destined for Canada. Besides these exceptions, any carrier, whether a truck, plane, vessel, or train, will not accept your shipment for export without a consistent ITN number. Plus, without an ITN number, in several cases, you will not be able to export your merchandise. Also, you should know that US Customs will assign an internal transaction number, i.e., an ITN, when you file your EEI. They use this number to confirm your EEI.

An EEI filing is required.

Next, your shipment will not need an EEI if the total value of the package is under US $2,500 and you are not shipping any item or package that needs an export license. Also, you can file your own EEI through You should file this prior to the export of your shipment unless you are an affirmed or approved US principal party in interest (USPPI). Besides that, many people do not know that they can file their EEI with US Customs for an extra fee. If you have been approved or are USPPI, you should file within 10 days of your export date. Plus, you should know that EEI is the information that should be filed through the AES, i.e., the automated export system, for goods that are shipped from the US to a foreign country.

Roles of the Census Bureau, CBP, and BIS:

The filing includes data about the sender and recipient of goods and about the goods that are being exported. The Bureau of Census uses these filings to calculate the US trade statistics, and CBP, i.e., customs and border protection, and the BIS, i.e., bureau of industry and security, use the information to assist in ensuring compliance with the export regulations of the US. There are several different kinds of nuances or tones regarding the EEI filings. Therefore, it is pivotal that you know how the EEI filing needs apply to the shipments, like when you are required to file and when the shipment is exempt from these needs.