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Trade News

Each day TFO Canada publishes a sample of trade news on the Canadian import market along with any new, updated or changed regulations and legislations regarding international trade; countries in which TFO Canada offers services and on the export sectors which it promotes.


Canadian Customs: Why Your Carrier抯 eManifest Compliance Matters

Tuesday, July 21, 2015 > 09:18:42

(Pacific Customs Brokers Ltd.)

For those of you new to, or unfamiliar with, ACI eManifest, this is how the CBSA summarizes the program.

“The Advance Commercial Information (ACI) program provides the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) with electronic pre-arrival cargo and conveyance information so they can identify health, safety and security threats related to commercial goods before the goods arrive in Canada. With the implementation of eManifest, highway carriers transporting goods into Canada are required to transmit cargo and conveyance data electronically to the CBSA prior to arrival. The cargo and conveyance data must be received and validated by the CBSA a minimum of one hour before the shipment arrives at the border.”  ACE is the equivalent U.S. program.

It has already been two months since the  Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) announced  the implementation of ACI eManifest. According to CBSA,  90% of those carriers who have a carrier code have filed at least one ACI. Pacific Highway reports that between 75% and 80% of the carriers clearing at this port are filing ACI. Carriers who have been arriving at the border without filing ACI, have been given the following notice.

Beginning July 10, 2015, the next phase of the ACI eManifest implementation timeline comes into effect. Carriers who do not comply with ACI eManifest requirements may be issued zero-rated penalties (non-monetary) under the CBSA’s Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS).

What does “zero-rated” AMPS penalty mean?

While no financial penalty will be levied during this phase, a zero-rated AMPS penalty is technically a penalty and will serve as a warning to carriers to correct the issue that led to the infraction.  Although there are no financial ramifications during this phase, carriers will need to take these zero-rated AMPS penalties seriously as they will form part of their performance record with CBSA.

This period of zero-rated AMPS is to give the industry an opportunity to make the necessary corrections to procedures and preventative mechanisms to ensure reduced risk of exposure to AMPS penalties. The zero-rated AMPS period will last for six months, after which, full AMPS will apply, including monetary fines.

What Importers Should Do?

In the coming time, cooperation amongst all parties in the supply chain will be critical to ensuring that the right information gets to the right place at the right time to avoid delays crossing the border into Canada. Importers are encouraged to communicate with their carriers and ensure they are eManifest set up as they will need to provide information to CBSA in advance and ensure descriptions and piece counts are accurate for all goods.

Failing to do so could result in:

  1. delays at the border

  2. contribute to potential fines for the carriers, which in turn could mean increased costs for the importer

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