Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Systems

Overview: Electronic data interchange applications

Commercial importing

The Canada Border Services Agency commercial importation process is made up of three major components: cargo reporting, release, and entry and accounting. The following is an overview of the available EDI applications for each of these components.

Cargo reporting initiatives

Advance Commercial Information

The purpose of the Advance Commercial Information (ACI) program is to identify threats to Canada's health, safety and security prior to the arrival of cargo and conveyances in Canada. Under ACI, carriers and freight forwarders submit electronic cargo and conveyance data to the Canada Border Services Agency within advance time frames.

Release Initiatives

Accelerated Commercial Release Operations Support System

The Accelerated Commercial Release Operations Support System (ACROSS) provides importers and brokers with the ability to transmit release and invoice data in electronic format. This system removes the requirement to present hard copy release packages. A Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) inspector reviews the release data and makes a release recommendation (in the case of pre-arrival) or a release decision (in the case of post-arrival). Using EDI, the CBSA returns processing acknowledgements (pre-arrival) or release decisions (post-arrival) to the originating importer or broker.

The CBSA has added enhancements to ACROSS to support the release transactions of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and other government departments such as Natural Resources Canada and Transport Canada. When CFIA transactions are submitted via EDI, the CBSA transfers them electronically to the CFIA to make a release recommendation or decision.

Customs Self Assessment

Customs Self Assessment (CSA) is a progressive approach to the import process that provides for streamlined border clearance, trade data reporting, accounting adjustments, revenue reporting and payment. At the border, CSA-eligible goods are authorized for delivery to the place of business of the importer, owner or consignee. These decisions are based on minimal information that identifies the CSA-approved importer, the CSA-approved carrier and the registered driver. CSA enables clients to use their own systems to fully self-assess and meet customs obligations.

Release Notification System

The Release Notification System (RNS) offers a timely and efficient notification of CBSA release decisions by providing brokers, importers, carriers and warehouse operators with electronic messages. The CBSA instantly notifies RNS participants when a transaction is released and when a Pre-arrival Review System transaction is approved.

Entry and accounting initiative

Customs Automated Data Exchange

The Customs Automated Data Exchange (CADEX) system provides importers and brokers with the ability to electronically transmit their accounting documents to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) for already-released goods. This arrangement removes the need to present hard-copy versions of documents. Clients can also query certain CBSA files, and receive K84 accounting data, release notifications, file updates and listings or releases when acquittal is overdue.

Customs Declaration

The Customs Declaration (CUSDEC) system offers the same opportunities as the CADEX system. However, with CUSDEC, the electronic data is transmitted to the CBSA using the international programming language known as UN/EDIFACT (United Nations / Electronic Data Interchange for Administration, Commerce and Transport). CUSDEC clients do not receive release notifications and are required to register for the Release Notification System.

Commercial exporting

Exporters may use either the Canadian Automated Export Declaration (CAED) software or the G7 electronic data interchange (EDI) export reporting application to report goods to be exported via EDI. Both methods are joint initiatives between the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Statistics Canada.

Canadian Automated Export Declaration

The Canadian Automated Export Declaration (CAED) is free and secure software provided by Statistics Canada that eliminates the paper-based reporting method. Registered exporters and agents report goods electronically over the Internet. This user-friendly software package automates the preparation of the CBSA's B13A, Export Declaration.

G7 EDI - Export reporting

The G7 export process provides Canadian exporters with the ability to file electronic export declarations for each shipment using a standard G7 electronic message format. The exporter provides an electronic copy of the G7 export declaration to the importer or agent in the importing country. The ability to share export and import information electronically with trading partners in other G7 countries expedites the clearance of Canadian exports and promotes the competitiveness of Canadian exporters.

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