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Canada Postpones eManifest Requirements for Highway and Rail Carriers

Thursday, October 24, 2013
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The Canada Border Services Agency announced this week that the eManifest requirement for highway and rail carriers will not become mandatory this fall. The delay was attributed to timelines associated with regulatory processes, and the agency said updates on the status of these processes will be made public when available.

The CBSA sees eManifest as a major transformational initiative that will modernize and improve cross-border commercial processes. When fully implemented, it will require carriers, freight forwarders and importers in all modes of transportation (air, marine, highway and rail) to electronically transmit advance commercial information to the CBSA within prescribed mode-specific time frames. The data required have been harmonized to the greatest extent possible with the World Customs Organization and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. According to the CBSA, the collection and risk assessment of this information will allow low-risk shipments to be identified prior to arrival and processed in a more efficient manner upon arrival in Canada. Trusted trader programs such as Free and Secure Trade, Customs Self-Assessment and the Commercial Driver Registration Program will continue to exist and will complement the systems and processes that will be put in place by eManifest.

The CBSA intends to provide at least 45 days advance notice of the eManifest mandatory compliance date. In the meantime, the agency advises highway and rail carriers who have not yet adopted eManifest to take advantage of the additional time and the CBSA’s various client support resources to become compliant as soon as possible. Some carriers have already adopted eManifest requirements and there has been a continual increase in eManifest transmissions.

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