Libya: ECTN mandatory from 1 January 2021

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The Electronic Cargo Tracking Note (ECTN) is a transport document required for exports to some African countries and ports with an aim to effectively control, supervise and manage import/export traffic of the country: Angola (Luanda, Lobito), Benin (Cotonou), Burundi, Burkina Faso (Ouagadougou), Cameroun (Douala, Yaounde), Central African Republic (Bangui), Congo (Pointe Noire), Cote D’Ivoire (Abidjan, San Pedro) , Dem Rep. Of Congo (Matadi, Kinshasa), Equatorial Guinea, Gabon (Libreville, Port Gentil), Ghana (Tema, Takoradi, Kumasi, Accra, …), Guinea (Conaky), Guinea-Bissau (Bissau) , Libya, Madagascar (Toamasina, Antanarivo), Mali (Bamako), Niger (Niamey), Senegal (Dakar), Sudan (Port Sudan, Khartoum), Tschad, Togo (Lome).

In some of these countries, the ECTN takes different names. In Angola it is called LC (Loading Certificate), in Cameroon it becomes BESC (Bordereau Electronique de Suivi de Cargaison), in the Dem. Congo it is FERI (Fiche Électronique des Renseignements à l’Importation), in Niger it is (BSC) Bordereau de Suivi de Cargaison, in Gabon takes the name of BIETC (Bordereau d’Identification Électronique de Traçabilité des Cargaisons).

Each ECTN must be applied and validated at the loading port and are fundamental for the import customs clearance upon arrival. Cargoes not covered by a valid ECTN will be blocked by the local Customs until the presentation of the final ECTN and appropriate fine will be charged.

The shipper or the freight forwarder is responsible for acquiring the ECTN waiver certificate from the authorized representative.



In Libya the ECTN has been mandatory since 01/01/2021.

Documents required for the issue of the ECTN

  • Bill of Lading: a draft copy can be used for the draft
  • Commercial Invoice (Commercial invoice must be certified by the Chamber of Commerce by exporter)
  • Export Customs Declaration – Details have to be same across all documents if it is not cross-trade
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Statistical Importer document of the Libyan Companies (الرمز الإحصائي للشركتك)

According to Libya Customs regulations, all cargoes to Libya must be accompanied by a ECTN certificate. The ECTN certificate must be validated five days before the vessel arrives at the latest.  ECTN Number must be on the Bill of Lading.

When shipping vehicles, their date of manufacture, chassis number and weight are required. Among the requested additional information, it is necessary to provide the e-mail address of the importer and exporter, the HS code of the product.

Effective from 11 March 2021, if an ECTN referemce number is missing for any delivery location in Libya, the Bill of Lading will not be released. Any shipment missing the ECTN number, containers will not be allowed discharged from the vessel and will retain on board (ROB).


As Italian freight forwarders often handling sea transport shipments from Italy to Libya, we can also take care of the ECTN service.


Contact us for your shipments from Italy to Libya, our staff can assist you both in English and Arabic language!

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