Background

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has announced that the export certification requirement for certain imports of beef from Argentina and New Zealand subject to a tariff-rate quota will be accomplished through the Electronic Certification System. As a result, effective Jan. 17 (New Zealand) and Jan. 18 (Argentina) all imports of beef from these countries that are subject to the TRQ must have a valid export certificate with a corresponding eCERT transmission at the time of entry, or withdrawal from warehouse, for consumption to claim the in-quota rate of duty.

eCERT uses electronic data transmissions of information normally associated with a required export document, such as a license or certificate, to facilitate the administration of quotas and ensure that the proper restraint levels are charged without being exceeded. Foreign countries participating in eCERT transmit information via a global network service provider, which allows connectivity to CBP’s Automated Commercial Environment. Specific data elements are transmitted to CBP by the importer of record (or an authorized customs broker) when filing an entry summary with CBP, and those data elements must match eCERT data from the foreign country before an importer may claim any applicable in-quota tariff rate of duty. If there is no transmission by the foreign government upon entry, an importer must claim the higher over-quota tariff rate.

CBP notes that the transition to eCERT for beef imported from Argentina and New Zealand will not change the TRQ filing process or requirements. Importers will continue to provide the export certificate numbers from these countries in the same manner as when currently filing entry summaries. In addition, the format of the export certificate numbers will remain the same for the corresponding eCERT transmissions.

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