CBSA formally extends eManifest for carriers deadline

by MM&D staff

OTTAWA, Ontario—Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has officially extended the implementation deadline for the highway carrier portion of its eManifest program.

This comes after MM&D reported last month that CBSA was looking to bump back its scheduled May 1, 2013 deadline.

According to the official notice issued by CBSA, “regulations to enforce eManifest requirements for highway carriers are expected to be in place in fall 2013. The CBSA anticipates being able to provide carriers as much as 45 days advance notice of the mandatory compliance date.”

eManifest is the third phase of the Advance Commercial Information (ACI) program. The program, which is set to create paperless procedures for processing cargo as it moves across the Canadian border, is being applied to individual shipping modes (land carriers, air carriers, ocean carriers) in a staggered schedule.

Some carriers—especially those that took the necessary steps to be ready for the May 1 deadline aren’t happy with the delay, according to David Bradley, president and CEO of the Canadian Trucking Alliance.

“The one thing we asked CBSA from the outset was to avoid the kind of stop-start approach to implementation that characterized the roll-out U.S. eManifest program so this announcement will not sit well with a lot of our members,” he said.

“Like any new program there have been some hiccups during implementation—some early adopters have experienced delays and complications sometimes arising out of a lack of familiarity on the part of CBSA border agents with the new policies and procedures—but on balance most have experienced faster clearance or believe clearance will be expedited once the bugs are worked out,” Bradley said.

He also warned carriers that even though the deadline has been pushed back a few months, they should do their best to get ready now for the implementation.

“If you wait until the 45 day notice period before starting to get ready, you won’t have enough time to be in compliance when the program does become mandatory.”