CBP, FMCSA to begin testing electronic pre-notification (September 14, 2004)

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Bureau of Customs Border Protection (CBP) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) yesterday outlined plans to begin testing a new pre-notification system.

The National Customs Automation Process (NCAP) test will begin no earlier than Nov. 29, according to an update on the Federal Register dated Sept. 13. Comments from the public and industry can be made at any point during the test, the bulletin says.

Carriers participating in the test will have the chance to submit electronic manifest data including the advanced pre-notification of cargo shipments. The test will be implemented in phases and will initially be conduced at the Blaine, Wash. and Buffalo, N.Y. crossings. The Champlain, Detroit and Port Huron border crossings will join the test at a later date.

In order to participate in the test, carriers had to have submitted an application outlining their willingness to set up an Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) account. More carriers will be permitted to take part in the test "as funding allows" the Register says.

To begin with, ACE filing will be permitted as well as filing by Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). Test participants must file their cargo information one hour in advance of arriving at the border, unless they are FAST-certified in which case they can file 30 minutes in advance.

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