5 Frequently Asked Questions About ACI eManifest | Part 1

5 Frequently Asked Questions About ACI eManifest | Part 1

As highway carriers struggle with the challenges presented to their business by ACI eManifest regulations and strive to get compliant, we frequently receive inquiries that need clarification. In the coming weeks, we'll feature five frequently asked questions about ACI eManifest. Jan Brock, recently retired Chief of Commercial Operations with Canada Border Services Agency for the Pacific Highway and Abbotsford Huntingdon districts and now a Senior Trade Advisor with Pacific Customs Brokers (Canada) will answer your questions about ACI emanifests and compliance.

So What Are Highway Carriers' Biggest Questions?

1. How Will The ACI eManifest Program Work?

Carriers are now required to electronically transmit cargo and conveyance data to CBSA for all shipments entering Canada. Submissions must be received and validated by the CBSA as early as 30 days in advance but no later than one hour before arrival at the First Port of Arrival (FPOA). All mandatory data elements and conditional elements where applicable must be included in submissions. (See Chapter 4: Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document ECCRD). A machine-readable barcode must be presented  to the Border Services Officer (BSO) at the FPOA. The barcode must either be the Conveyance Reference Number (CRN) or Cargo Control Number (CCN) associated to the trip. If the CCN is provided, the CRN must be hand-written on a document and provided to the BSO.

Carriers have a variety of submission options including utilizing a third-party service provider such as Border Pro for Carriers for eManifest filing services, or CBSA's ACI eManifest portal.

2. Who Has To Provide An eManifest?

With some exceptions, carriers for hire who are transporting commercial goods into Canada, or returning to Canada empty are required to file ACI eManifest.

3. What Is A Conveyance Reference Number?

The first four digits of the Conveyance Reference Number (CRN) must be the carrier code representing the carrier that is physically transporting the goods to Canada and reporting the goods at the First Port of Arrival (FPOA). This statutory obligation cannot be shifted from one carrier to another. The carrier code of the carrier transporting the goods must always be represented in the CRN, regardless of which party transmitted the related cargo data.

4. What Commodities Are Exempt From eManifest Requirements?

At this point, no specific products have been exempted from eManifest requirements. The ACI/eManifest Highway Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document does provide info on exceptions and exemptions to eManifest filing requirements.

For a list of exceptions and exemptions from the eManifest program, consult the CBSA Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document - Chapter 4: Advance Commercial Information.

5. Do We Have To Set Up A New eManifest For Every Customs Broker?

No, the ACI eManifest program is not customs broker specific. You are required to transmit advance cargo and conveyance information for each shipment transported into Canada by truck or rail car. These shipments could all be offered for release to CBSA by the same customs broker or by a combination of customs brokers.

Learn more about ACI eManifest

Attend one of our upcoming 90-minute sessions (seminar or webinar) and learn more about ACI eManifest. We will answer your eManifest related questions, offer practical solutions and help you comply with this regulation that is now in effect. For details and to register »

5 Frequently Asked Questions About ACI eManifest | Part 2
5 Frequently Asked Questions About ACI eManifest | Part 3
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About Author
Jan Brock

Jan Brock joined PCB Customs Brokers in 2015 as a Senior Trade Advisor. She retired from Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in 2015 after serving more than 37 years. Jan started her career with CBSA as a summer student in 1976 and worked part-time until she graduated from U.B.C. with a Bachelor of Education Degree in 1980 . Shortly after graduating from U.B.C. Jan worked full time as an inspector with CBSA and within three years was promoted to Superintendent. She served some time in the Regional Operations office as an Operations Review Officer before she was promoted to Chief of Operations first at the Customs Mail Centre, then in the Metro District as the Commercial Chief and ending her career as a Chief at Pacific Highway Commercial Operations where she served as Chief from 1992 to 2015. During her career she was a member of the Customs Drug Team and a trainer in the National Enforcement Program. Jan also served as the Regional Coordinator Officer Powers and Use of Force for the Pacific Region. Jan served on many Commercial Program Reviews and committees both national and regional during her career and possesses an expansive knowledge of importing and exporting into and from Canada.

While we strive for accuracy in all our communications, as the Importer of Record it is incumbent upon your company to ensure that you are aware of the requirements under the new regulations so that you maintain compliance as always.