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CBP Provides Additional Information on July 23 Mandatory ACE Filing for Quota Entries

Thursday, July 21, 2016
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has provided the following additional information concerning the July 23 effective date of mandatory filing in the Automated Commercial Environment of quota submissions with respect to electronic entries and entry summaries associated with entry types 02, 07, 12, 21, 22, 31, 32, 34 and 38.

USDA Licenses. ACE will automatically allocate all quotas for both commodity-based quotas and Department of Agriculture import licenses.

Quota Filing and Corresponding Entry Types. Quota entries will be filed as entry type 02 with a quota HTSUS number until the quota is filled. Once quota has filled, closed or is otherwise unavailable, entries should be filed in ACE using an entry type 01 or other non-quota entry type with the high rate of duty. CBP will no longer need to process non-quota entry/entry summaries as quota. Trade filers will receive system messages for their particular transaction notifying them of quota processing status depending on the entry type, HTSUS number and quota fill status.

Filing Certified from Summary. Trade filers must file quota entries (cargo release) as certified from summary. CBP will process the entry summary for quota and the entry will be processed for CBP and partner government agency release requirements. Any reject on the entry or entry summary portion at that point should be refiled independently. Rejected entry summaries do not need to be filed as certified from summary.

Presentation Date. Quota presentation date will be calculated by ACE based on the latest of the following three electronic timestamps: (1) submission timestamp of the Automated Broker Interface transmission or clock stamp of the paper non-ABI, (2) arrival timestamp of the vessel for cargo entry, and (3) the payment timestamp or timestamp when a future payment date is scheduled via statement (not the future date, but the date the scheduling itself occurs). For quota warehouse withdrawals, the arrival timestamp is not used.

Paper Documents. CBP will not require paper entries for filing of quota in ACE and an ABI transmission is sufficient for processing of most quotas. Trade filers will receive response messages from ACE as the entry is accepted and quota is processed. Non-ABI submissions are acceptable but will be subject to manual processing by CBP and may result in delays in quota processing.  Supporting documents, licenses, permits or certificates may be transmitted via the Document Image System provided policy or other directives allow.

Quota Query. ABI quota query will be available in ACE on July 24. This will provide a status of allocated quota at the time of query but will not include unprocessed quota or quota pending allocation, similar to what was provided in ACS quota query. Port personnel may be consulted for guidance on the status of particular quotas if near filling.

Quota Allocation. Generally, ACE will allocate quota based on the presentation date and electronic timestamps once a day via an automated process. USDA licenses will allocate on a more frequent basis. Once allocated, filers will receive a UC message informing them of final allocation.

Manual Allocation. CBP will be able to manually allocate quotas when needed; e.g., protests, corrections and adjustments, systems issues, and various special cases that may occur.

Opening Moment Quotas. Special rules will apply to quotas that are expected to fill at opening. In these instances quota entries with presentation dates between 12 midnight (local) and 12 noon (Eastern) on the quota opening date will receive a presentation time of 12 noon (Eastern) to ensure that all filers are treated the same in terms of quota priority. Quota processing for opening moment can be held so that CBP headquarters personnel can review lines subject to opening moment prior to issuing proration via ACE. 

Once ready for processing, ACE will reject the entry summary and the filer will be notified via UC message of the amount of proration they receive. The filer may then resubmit the rejected entry summary for quota allocation up to the amount of the proration or take other action as appropriate (leave in warehouse, allotment transfer, etc.). 

Pre-Allocation Review. CBP will be replacing the paper preliminary review with a pre-allocation review in ACE that will provide 72 hours after opening moment for the redress of any concerns prior to allocation. 

Post Summary Corrections and Cancelations. ACE will be the one system for quota allocations following July 23. For entries and entry summaries filed in ACS with quota prior to July 23, the ACS paper procedures will continue to be followed. To cancel an ACS entry summary, a paper cancelation request must be submitted to the appropriate port for CBP. To correct an ACS entry summary, a paper post-entry amendment must be submitted to the appropriate port. CBP will adjust the quota records as necessary in ACE.

For entries and entry summaries filed in ACE with quota, the electronic PSC procedures will continue to be followed. PSCs do not need to be certified from summary but will be considered a new quota submission.

The trade filer should carefully monitor quota status if a PSC is involved, especially if that quota has since filled. In that case, after backing out the quota to accept the PSC, quota will no longer be available even if previously allocated and the quota will remain closed. 

Visa, eCERT and Other Licenses, Permits and Certificates. Visa and eCERT in ACE will not require the filing of an entry type 02 or other quota entry type if there is no quota line on the entry/entry summary. Certificate/visa requirements are driven by the HTSUS number or textile category depending on the circumstance. These are generally non-quota programs and should be reported in the 51 or 52 record of the ABI transmission. This includes reporting of multiple certificates for Haiti HOPE where the eCERT is reported in the 51 record and the OTEXA earned import allowance certificate is reported as a type 13 in the 52 record. For Dominican Republic EIAP, it is a type 25 in the 52 record. eCERT for Australia will be reported as a type 08 in the 52 record.

 NAFTA Tariff Preference Levels. Canada and Mexico TPLs are considered quota and should be filed as entry type 02 or another quota entry type. The certificate number is reported electronically on the summary as 03 for CA and 04 for MX in the 52 record. Requirements for submitting via DIS or on paper will be subject to policy and regulatory guidance.

Remote Location Filing. RLF is available in ACE for both quota and visa transactions after July 23. Timestamp and time zone for presentation will be determined based on port of processing.

PGAs. Mandatory filing of quota submissions in ACE will impact agencies such as the Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Office of Textiles and Apparel. These organization will receive information from entries filed in ACE with accompanying agency form data that relate to quota merchandise (tuna, textiles, etc.). This content may be accessed through the PGA data processing module of the ACE account. All PGAs will have access to data elements identified in their signed memoranda of understanding in ACE starting July 23.

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