Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Scheme

Obligations information for brokers

Undertaking Continuing Professional Development (CPD) ensures that brokers' knowledge and understanding of changes affecting the industry remain up-to-date. The requirement to undertake CPD is a condition of a customs broker licence.

All licensed customs brokers must comply with CPD obligations regardless of whether the customs broker is an active customs broker or not. This includes customs brokers who are involved only in brokerage management.

The Department does not impose CPD obligations on persons other than licence holders but those intending to apply for a licence in the future and other brokerage employees such as compiler/classifiers may have an interest in attending CPD activities to increase their own awareness and skills development.

CPD is undertaken by engaging in a points-based system of ongoing relevant accredited education. A natural person who holds a customs broker licence is required to undertake sufficient accredited CPD activity to accrue a specified number of CPD points each CPD year. The CPD year commences on 1 April each year and ends on 31 March the following year. Failure to accrue sufficient points within a CPD year may affect the status of the broker's licence.

CPD content aims to complement and support other Departmental initiatives designed to increase and enhance compliance with the laws relating to goods under our control.

CPD points required

The scheme requires each licensed customs broker to undertake sufficient CPD activity to qualify for a total of 30 points per CPD year by participating in activities across the two CPD streams. Points gained are valid only for the year of attendance and cannot be "banked" for future years.

Stream A – An activity in this stream must relate to the content of one of the core units of the approved course of study, for example the Diploma of Customs Broking; and address at least one of the skills and abilities for the core unit(s) to which the activity is related.

Stream B – An activity in this stream must cover a subject of relevance/importance to a customs broker, e.g. the supply chain, management; and contain material that has been 'contextualised' (i.e. tailored) to the work of a customs broker.

An activity within either stream must meet the criteria for accreditation as developed by us in consultation with the National Customs Brokers Licensing Advisory Committee (NCBLAC).

A customs broker may complete all 30 CPD points per CPD year from Stream A if they wish but no more than 12 CPD points can be counted from Stream B in a single CPD year.

There is no limit on the number of times that a customs broker may repeat a CPD activity; however, where a CPD activity is repeated within a single CPD year, the points for that activity may be counted only once for that CPD year.

For a newly licenced broker, the requirement is to undertake 5 points for every two months remaining in the CPD year in which they received their licence and meet the standard CPD requirements for each subsequent full CPD year.

Attendance and costs

There is no fixed format for the presentation of an activity. Activities can occur on a face-to-face basis, by video-conferencing, by viewing of DVDs, through online activities such as "webinars", or in other ways. The focus is on substance rather than form – that is, on ensuring that the activity provides a professional quality treatment of the subject in question. Attendance at, or participation in courses, seminars or other educational activities qualifies.

The Department has not imposed any minimum or maximum amount that CPD activity organisers might charge for attendance at, or participation in, CPD activities.

Whether the individual licensed customs broker or their employer should meet any cost incurred in a licensed customs broker's attendance at CPD activities would be entirely a matter between employer and employee. Some employers may choose to cover this cost, others may not.

Evidence of completion

Customs brokers are required to sign a declaration that they have met their CPD requirements when renewing their licence. The Department might also ask a licensed customs broker to demonstrate ongoing compliance at any time within a licence triennium. In a renewal year, a failure to comply could lead to non-renewal of the licence. In a non-renewal year, it could lead to suspension or cancellation of the licence. For this reason, licenced customs brokers must obtain and retain receipts or other suitable documentation evidencing their attendance at, or participation in, CPD activities.

Where a national or state conference is awarded CPD points, the CPD provider is to ensure that it documents the attendance of customs brokers at the conference. This requirement is in addition to the general requirement that a customs broker obtains and retains receipts or other suitable documentation evidencing their attendance at, or participation in, CPD activities.

CPD Providers

The principal commercial CPD activity providers that offer accredited CPD activities are listed below.

Broker CPD Pty Ltd
Website: www.brokercpd.com.au

CBFCA
Website: www.cbfca.com.au

Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA)
Website: www.ftalliance.com.au

Myfreightcareer - AFIF CPD Training
Website: www.myfreightcareer.com.au/customs-broking

The CPD activities that customs brokers can undertake to satisfy the requirements of the scheme must be accredited by the Department. The purpose of the accreditation is to ensure that the subject matter of the activity is relevant and useful material to the duties of a customs broker. That the subject matter is given substance and practical treatment in the activity and that the presenters have qualifications and experience that enable them to deliver a meaningful learning opportunity.

The material contained in an activity may include or summarise the views, standards or recommendations of third parties. The inclusion of such material does not necessarily reflect the views of the Department, nor does it indicate a commitment to any particular course of action. The Department does not guarantee, nor does it accept any liability arising from or connected to, the accuracy, reliability, currency or completeness of any material contained in a CPD activity. It is therefore recommended that users exercise their own skill and care to assess the accuracy, currency, completeness and relevance of the material before using or relying on it for their own purposes. The material contained in a CPD activity is not a substitute for professional or legal advice and users should obtain their own independent advice, as necessary.

Contact Us

Any enquires concerning CPD should be directed by email to brokers.licensing@border.gov.au.