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QUEBEC CITY, Que. — A bill has been introduced in the Senate that will allow Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (CCRA) to upgrade its border facilities in Quebec.

The bill proposes amendments to the Customs Act that would allow the CCRA to “focus its efforts on high or unknown risks and on health and safety issues.”

The five-year plan, first announced in April last year, incorporates such things Customs Self-Assessment (CSA), which will offer commercial importers a quicker and more dependable way to get their goods across the border. This is accomplished by quickly releasing low-risk goods at the border when low-risk importers identify themselves; the Expedited Passenger Processing System (EPPS).

Pre-approved travelers would be allowed to use automated kiosks to clear customs and immigration at airports quickly, and the expansion of the CANPASS family of permit-based programs would also work to allow pre-approved, low-risk travelers to cross the Canada-U.S. border more quickly.

The legislation also proposes: less formal administrative reviews and extension of time limits for clients appealing fines; a more simple redress process for third parties; advance ruling on tariff classification of goods on a legislative basis, clarifying situations for importers and giving them expanded appeal rights; and the harmonization of collection mechanisms, payment due dates and applications of interest on duties.

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