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June 30, 2020: Elimination of paper-based reporting
CBSA is no longer accepting paper Export Declaration forms (B13A), all export declarations must be reported electronically.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the CBSA and Statistics Canada have agreed to extend the decommissioning of the Canadian Automated Export Declaration (CAED) system and the onboarding window to register to CERS to , for exceptional cases where the client cannot meet the original , timeline.
Overview: Canadian Export Reporting System Portal
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) developed the Canadian Export Reporting System (CERS) Portal to allow the exporting community to electronically submit:
- export declarations
- Summary Reporting Program (SRP) reports
- bulk data for upload
With the elimination of the paper export reporting method (B13A, Export Declaration Form), the CERS Portal offers exporters a single, user-friendly system.
It replaces the CAED system, that will be retired by Statistics Canada on .
Main features of the portal
The CERS Portal provides many benefits to its exporting community such as:
- secure transmission of export declarations and summary reports to the CBSA
- similar registration process and functionalities to the eManifest Portal
- data validation prior to export declaration submission
- declaration submission history up to a maximum of 499 reports
- access to online help and reference material
Activation process for CAED users (during onboarding only)
CAED users have been provided with an activation ID to use when activating their account in the CERS Portal. Please contact the CERS enquiries mailbox (email@example.com) if you have not received this activation ID and were an active user of CAED from , to .
If you are new to electronic reporting or haven't been an active user of CAED between December 1, 2017 and December 1, 2019, please refer to the Registration process for new exporters.
Transferring your business information to the portal
Your company’s tombstone data (name, address, and so on) in the portal is based on your export business number (15-digit number) from the Canada Revenue Agency.
Report any inaccurate information in the business account to the Canada Revenue Agency at 1-800-959-5525. If the change is not reflected on your account within 48 hours, contact our Technical Commercial Client Unit. Do not delete your account.
The business designations reflected in your business account are the same as those reported under CAED. If your business has been using multiple business accounts to export goods, you may be incorrectly designated as a customs service provider in the CERS Portal.
If you disagree with the business designation assigned to your business in CERS, contact our Technical Commercial Client Unit. The ability for users to change their designation themselves will be added in a future release.
Associated business accounts
As a customs service provider (CSP), once you have activated your business account in CERS, you do not have the ability to associate new clients to your business account in CAED. Instead, you must complete form BSF831. The CBSA will add the new client to your CERS business account when we receive the completed form.
For each associated business account, a customs service provider may continue to use the existing authorization codes in CAED until that business account submits its first export declaration via CERS.
Note: Unless your associated business account submitted an export report using CAED between and , they will not be listed as an associated business in the CERS business account.
CERS has an enhanced verification process for some data, which includes the Business Number for import/export (BNRM). If exporters have a valid reporting relationship (or associated business account) with a customs service provider, but that provider does not appear as a client in CERS, their BNRM may not be valid.
In addition, all exporter BNRMs need to be designated “export” or “both import and export.”
Contact the Canada Revenue Agency at 1-800-959-5525 to:
- verify the validity of your client’s BNRM
- change a client’s BNRM designation
Templates and lists
The memorized lists (Exporter, Consignee, Service Provider, Certifier and Commodity sections) and templates in CAED were not migrated to CERS. These will need to be recreated in CERS using the lookup and template functionality. For further information on creating a lookup or template, please refer to the quick guide:
Historical export declarations
All export declarations submitted using CAED since , have been migrated to CERS. To access these documents, conduct a search on submitted export documents using the related proof of report number. You will not be able to access historical declarations using the submitted documents tab in the CERS Portal.
Consult View submitted documents (CAED export declaration) in the quick reference guide for more information.
Proof or report numbers
CERS will not generate a proof of report number until after you submit an export declaration. We are aware that some exporting carriers have had challenges providing exporters with a unique carrier-assigned code without first obtaining the proof of report number.
For more information on how to comply, consult:
- Memorandum D20-1-1: Exporter Reporting, Appendix D (Proof of Report)
- Customs Notice 20-30: Clarifying Proof-of-Report Requirements for Exporters and Carriers
Registration process for new exporters
If you have not used CAED or SRP to report exports since , you need to follow a different process to begin using CERS. Before you can register and access the CERS Portal, you must apply to become a portal client.
The approval process may take up to 10 business days or longer, if there is any missing or incomplete data. Once approved, the CBSA will send a Shared Secret to the email address indicated on the application form.
Apply to become a portal client: complete form BSF831 and submit it by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
A shared secret is a temporary access code. The CBSA will issue you a shared secret once your application to become a CERS Portal client has been approved. You must use this code to create a portal business account within 90 days of the issue date.
Only the CBSA and the authorized representative of the company have access to this information. If necessary, a replacement shared secret can be issued by contacting the Commercial Registration Unit by email at: email@example.com.
Portal account options and guidance
Once you have a shared secret or authorization ID, an authorized representative of the business, called an account owner, sets up the portal business account using their GCKey or a sign-in-partner.
To log in to the portal, employees will need their own GCKey or sign-in-partner. They may use an existing GCKey (created to access other government services such as eManifest) or create a new one. Each employee who will work in the portal must then set up a user account. GCKeys and user reference numbers are issued after initial log-in. They are unique to individual users and may not be shared between employees.
To set up a user account, the employee will need to provide basic identification including name, email address and telephone number.
There are 4 types of user accounts in the CERS Portal:
- account owner (business account)
- proxy account owner
- account user
- account browser
Consult Adding a user to a Adding a user to a CERS Portal business account in the quick guide for more information.
Creating and managing export declarations and summary reports
For guidance on completing the various fields in an export declaration, consult the Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document (ECCRD): Chapter 25—Canadian Export Reporting System (CERS) Portal and the Quick Reference Guide to the Canadian Export Reporting System.
For guidance on the proper use of the summary report line template, consult the Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document (ECCRD): Chapter 25—Canadian Export Reporting System (CERS) Portal.
CERS Portal users must use a computer that:
- has access to the internet
- contains one of the following supported web browsers:
- Internet Explorer 8 or above
- Firefox 34 or above (recommended)
Note: Please do not use Microsoft Edge as this may cause issues.
For uninterrupted access to the CERS Portal, the browser should:
- support TLS 1.2 (recommended) or TLS 1.0
- have Cookies enabled
Important: When portal users are finished using the CERS Portal on a shared computer, they must log out by selecting the log out link and close the browser before leaving the computer unattended. This will prevent unauthorized access to personal and/or commercial information by others.
For CERS data transmission requirements, please refer to the Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document (ECCRD): Chapter 25—Canadian Export Reporting System (CERS) Portal
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