Welcome to the FAQs section. Please click on a question(s) below or use the “+” to expand the answers to each question.

What is CTN Number?

A: Cargo Tracking Note or CTN is an official loading certificate number which confirms detailed information about cargo and its movement between ports. Being a mandatory regime, every shipment must be covered by a CTN number before the cargo arrives at destination port.

Why is the CTN number important?

A : The CTN serves as a Risk Assessment Engine which allows Customs and other Authorities to effectively control, supervise, and manage import traffic. A key component of CTN is the advanced notification of shipment details before they arrive at destination port. CTN certificates, allows Customs Authorities access to such information as: description of cargo, weight, volume, type and value of the cargo, exporter/importer, mode of shipment and shipping route as well as value of freight. Through this system, a common platform is thus created which allows each country to maintain important statistical data for future logistical monitoring.

How to secure CTN number?


a) Registration: The Shipper/Forwarder at Port of Origin needs to register & create an account online with CTN before proceeding with below steps to secure a CTN number.

b) Steps to Secure CTN NUMBER


The whole process to obtain CTN number is completed online by Shipper/Forwarder at port of origin. It begins with shipper/forwarder providing ship information, shipment information and cargo details.

Then followed by uploading/attaching of relevant supporting documents such as: Commercial Invoice, Packing list and Customs declaration document at port of origin. Shipper/forwarder then previews all the entries made and proceeds to generate the CTN number (pre-validation).

Once CTN number is Pre-Validated, shipper/forwarder submits the CTN number together with Shipping Instructions to Shipping Line for B/L and manifest preparation. After B/L is generated, shipper/forwarder can now validate the CTN by entering the B/L number and date as well as attaching a copy of the B/L and freight invoice.

The validated CTN is then made electronically available online to shipper/forwarder and Customs Authority at destination. Shipper/forwarder can view/print the validated CTN certificate for any purpose. The whole process to validate CTN number must be completed within 24hrs or maximum 7 days.

Ghana CTN regulations

Regulations for CTN to Ghana as follows:

CTN number is mandatory without which clearing of goods at the ports will not be possible. Importers in Ghana must ensure that their respective shippers/forwarders at port of origin have provided them with a Valid CTN number inserted on B/L, manifest and on all shipping documents.

A maximum 7 calendar days is allowed within which to complete the process from Entry of details to Validation of CTN FREE OF CHARGE. It is strongly recommended that shipper/exporter/forwarder at port of origin secures the CTN number and submit it together with the Shipping Instructions (SI) to Shipping Line for both B/L & manifest preparations.
A Pre-Validated CTN which is not completed within the mandated 7 calendar days period will be TIMED-OUT; and will become subject to Amendment Penalty (inserted data is blocked and only reinstated after settlement of amendment penalty).

Amendment Penalty arises when (i) application process is Timed-Out and requires reinstatement for client to resume and (ii) Changes are requested on a Pre-Validated application.

Click the link for more Information on how to apply for CTN number. Any questions, Live Chat is available 24/7 !

How to apply for CTN number

A: To apply for CTN number, it is recommended that you assemble all the necessary documents required.

Once assembled, you would normally proceed straight to the easy step-by-step online process of supplying information and uploading/attaching supporting documents after which you can receive your pre-validated CTN number within 24 – 36 hours.

Once B/L is issued, you will have to now validate the CTN by inserting the B/L number and date and attaching B/L copy and freight invoice. From Start to Validation of CTN, you are allowed 7 calendar days!

It’s that simple! Still have questions? Talk to us NOW, Live Chat available 24/7!

What are the required Documents to secure a CTN number?

For Pre-Validation

Commercial Invoice
Customs Export Declaration at Port of Origin
Packing List

For final Validation

Bill Of Lading (B/L number and date + attaching a copy)
Freight Invoice

Can an importer apply For CTN number?

A: No. All CTN procedures are the sole duty & obligation of the shipper/forwarder/exporter at port of origin.

CTN cannot be regularized at port of destination and importer may suffer the consequences (of delays & possible high penalties) if shipper/forwarder does not comply.

We have sent all documents to our importer. Can he/she secure CTN number with supporting documents?

A: No. CTN processing is the exclusive responsibility of the shipper/forwarder at port of origin.

Who is CTN Ghana?

A: CTN Ghana Limited is an independent project consulting firm established to provide global online electronic services with regards to cargo shipment information. Being an international company, CTN Group seeks ultimately to offer Customs Authorities across Africa the much needed platform for engagement and exchange of information.

How do I receive original CTN certificate?

A: Still wondering, how your original CTN certificate will be delivered? The answer is here…..

To custom clear your cargo at destination, you don’t need to receive original hard copy of the CTN certificate via mail or courier to your address. Instead, once validated, your CTN is made electronically available to you online. You can view, print and must forward same to your importer; or for whatever purpose. Thus, there is no need to physically deliver any document. The validated CTN number is also made electronically available to Customs Authority at destination who can now check and track information of the shipment using this unique CTN number.

Do we need to generate CTN number for all types of cargo?

A: Yes. Five (5) distinct and regular modes of shipment have been identified and your shipment may come under any one of the following: 1) FCL 2) LCL (Consolidation) 3) RoRo <5mt 4) RoRo > 5mt and 5) Breakbulk/Conventional. You will need to generate 1 CTN number for each mode of shipment above. Please contact us if you have any specific kind of shipment that is not mentioned above.

Is it possible to generate a CTN number for shipments that depart outside of Europe?

A: Yes, CTN Ghana is operating globally and the sole representative to generate CTN number for all shipments from every loading port around the globe to Ghana.

What happens if shipment arrives at P.O.D. without a valid CTN number?

A: Your goods cannot be cleared, high penalties may apply, possible protracted delays with consequences for high demurrage fees; and in some cases, confiscation of goods.

Is CTN number necessary for LCL (Consolidated) container?

A: Yes; if you are using a freight forwarder and if the freight forwarder has a local agent in Ghana unto whom the cargo is consigned to. In this situation, the Master B/L is created to the freight forwarder as Shipper; and the local agent as Consignee with each sharing member as Notify party 1/ 2 / 3 / etc.

Do Aid Organisations (UN / WFP / Red Cross / etc) have to obtain CTN number for their cargo?

A: Yes. Commercial cargo shipment sent by aid organizations must be covered by a valid CTN number.

Do we have to mention the CTN number on the Bill of Lading?

A: Absolutely YES. It is mandatory for shipper/forwarder to submit the Pre-validated CTN number together with the shipping instructions to the Shipping Line for B/L and manifest preparation.

Can I get a draft of the Pre-validated CTN before the final validation of the CTN number?

A: Yes, you can view, print and must send the Pre-Validated CTN number together with the shipping instructions to the Shipping Line for B/L and manifest preparation purposes.

How long does it take for a Pre-validated CTN number to be validated?

A: All depends on you! Once B/L is issued, you will have to now Validate the CTN by inserting the B/L number and date and attaching B/L copy and freight invoice. You must remember that you are allowed a maximum  7 calendar days From Start to Validation of CTN.

Can I make changes to a validated CTN document?

A: No; you cannot amend the CTN once validated.

error: Content is protected !!