OTTAWA, Ont. — The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is extending the eManifest informed compliance period for highway carriers.
Regulations to enforce eManifest requirements for highway carriers are expected to be in place this Fall. The CBSA said it anticipates being able to provide carriers as much as 45 days advance notice of the mandatory compliance date.
CBSA said the deadline extension was due to “timeliness associated with the regulatory process.”
However, back in December we reported that the Canadian Trucking Alliance had informed CBSA that its member carriers were still experiencing difficulties and delays with the ACI eManifest program. The informed compliance period took effect Nov. 1, 2012.
In a letter to the CBSA directorship, CTA’s senior VP Stephen Laskowski characterized the problems as “above and beyond what could reasonably be attributed to learning curve issues,” which are adding costs to carriers.
“It is clear from feedback and complaints from CTA members that there is a significant lack of consistency among border service officers in the level of knowledge and application of ACI policies,” wrote Laskowski, who added CTA receives reports daily from carriers across Canada who say they have been held up for hours and in cases, days, due to confusion over ACI policies at the port level.
In addition, carriers were reporting that some border service officers are telling truck drivers that ACI isn’t being implemented until May 2013. That, of course, has now been pushed to the Fall.
During the informed compliance period, the CBSA is monitoring compliance with eManifest and providing feedback to non-compliant carriers. Carriers are not denied entry to Canada nor are they subject to penalties if found to be in non-compliance during this period.
Once the eManifest highway carrier requirements become mandatory CBSA must receive and validate highway carriers’ electronic cargo and conveyance data a minimum of one hour before commercial goods arrive at the border. Non-compliant carriers will be subject to penalties.
Highway carriers can choose between two options to transmit their cargo and conveyance data to the CBSA: 1) the eManifest Portal or 2) an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) method (Value Added Network, Customs Internet Gateway, Direct Connect to the CBSA and Third Party Service Providers).
On arrival at the border, drivers are required to present an eManifest lead sheet to the CBSA officer.
Release processes will not change with the implementation of eManifest and carriers must continue to provide importers/customs brokers with advance release data/documents for goods being released at first point of arrival.
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