Arctic Shipping Electronic Commercial Clearances Program
Customs Notice 18-14

Ottawa, October 9, 2018

1. The purpose of this notice is to provide information on the Arctic Shipping Electronic Commercial Clearances Program (ASECC) pilot program, a risk-based alternative approach for clearing commercial cargo and conveyances in the marine mode, for specific vessels destined to the Arctic. The program is being updated for the 2019 arctic shipping season

2. Under the Reporting of Imported Goods Regulations, carriers, regardless of where they arrive in Canada, whether near a Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) Commercial Vessel port (C/VESS) or not, are required to report all cargo and conveyances to the nearest CBSA office destined for that purpose that is open for business.

3. Marine carriers transporting cargo to Canada, with few exceptions, are required to transmit Advance Commercial Information (ACI) for cargo and conveyances to the CBSA prior to arrival in Canada. Additionally, marine carriers are also required to electronically transmit the Conveyance Arrival Certification Message (CACM) upon arrival in Canada.

4. Currently, CBSA regional offices may require a vessel to divert to the nearest designated customs office, or may make arrangements with carriers to clear marine vessels and cargo while they are anchored at sea, on a special service or cost recovery basis.

5. The ASECC alternate process allows low risk carriers and vessels to report and clear conveyances, crew and cargo virtually in order to meet the reporting requirements. The CBSA maintains the authority to require the carrier to divert to a C/VESS port for examination or to examine through a cost recovery basis.

6. The updated two (2) part approval process for the ASECC pilot is:

7. Other Eligibility requirements:

8. All carriers requesting ASECC alternate processing will be required, wherever possible, to use ACI to submit their pre-arrival data and arrival message.

9. Carriers coming to Canada in-ballast do have the option, at this time, of transmitting their ACI to the CBSA. If a carrier chooses this option, they must also report their arrival electronically by sending the CACM.

10. The CBSA strongly recommends that marine carriers hold a bonded carrier code for alternate processing, as a bond is required any time unreleased goods move beyond the first port of arrival.

11. Through the CBSA’s compliance program initiatives, administrative monetary penalties and through the leveraging of OGDs such as the Canadian Coast Guard, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Department of National Defense and Transport Canada, the CBSA will ensure vessels destined for arctic ports are compliant with CBSA alternate processing directives.

12. Inquiries related to this notice may be directed to:

Date modified: