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CBP to Begin First Test of Partner Government Agency Message Set on Jan. 13

Friday, December 13, 2013
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

U.S. Customs and Border Protection plans to launch Jan. 13 a two-year test of the partner government agency message set, which will allow the trade community to electronically submit required data for importations regulated by PGAs that has heretofore been submitted on paper forms. The test will also allow participants to submit this data once, via the Automated Broker Interface, rather than separately to each agency.

Filers participating in this test will submit PGA message set data for the Environmental Protection Agency for vehicles, engines and ozone-depleting substances and for the Food Safety and Inspection Service for meat, poultry and eggs. The data elements being accepted are generally those found in the current EPA forms 3520-1 and 3520-21 (importation declaration) and FSIS form 9540-1 (import inspection application and report) and include data submissions related to ODS imports that are currently handled via phone, email and/or paper communication. Only such data elements for type 01 (consumption) and type 11 (informal) commercial entries filed at the following ports and in the modes indicated will be accepted as part of this test: EPA - Newark, N.J., and Long Beach, Calif. (ocean only); FSIS – Champlain, N.Y. (truck), Houston, Texas (ocean) and Philadelphia, Pa. (ocean).

CBP states that under this test the PGA message set data must be submitted as part of an ACE entry summary at any time prior to the arrival of the merchandise on the conveyance transporting it to the U.S. The data will be validated and made available to the EPA or FSIS, eliminating the need for the submission and subsequent handling of paper documents. The data will also be used to fulfill merchandise entry requirements, allowing for earlier release decisions and more certainty for importers in determining the logistics of cargo delivery.

To be eligible to apply for this test, an applicant must (a) be a self-filing importer or broker who has the ability to file ACE entry summaries certified for cargo release and (b) file entries for EPA and FSIS commodities that are the subject of this test. CBP will accept an unlimited number of participants for the test, except that it will accept less than ten for the ODS portion.

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