Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Border information for business
Cross-border supply chains are vital to ensure the continued flow of goods, including food and medical supplies for all Canadians. The CBSA and our federal partners are working with commercial stakeholders to ensure that commercial traffic is not impeded.
General information for our business clients
To speed up our response time, business clients using the following services are asked to submit inquiries, requests or questions via email or electronic forms instead of using fax or mail:
In addition, you may be affected by processing delays if your are importing goods by mail. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a significant increase in volume has resulted in processing delays at the 3 international mail centres. Learn more about Importing goods by mail.
Border measures and exemptions for commercial and trade
The CBSA is committed to supporting Canadian importers and exporters and the free flow of goods and services across our international borders.
The Government of Canada is strongly urging all Canadians to avoid discretionary (non-essential) travel outside the country until further notice. There are exemptions in place to ensure that critical infrastructure, essential services and economic supply chains continue between Canada and the US to ensure that food, fuel, and life-saving medicines reach people on both sides of the border.
There are also exemptions to travel restrictions for critical workers, who will nonetheless need to self-monitor and self-isolate when not working.
We urge carriers who do not already get electronic notices to sign up as soon as possible. Drivers and carriers who get electronic notices do not need to stop at Primary Inspection Lines (PIL) for a stamped copy of the lead sheet. This reduces document handling at PILs and is an important safety measure during COVID-19.
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Changes to CBSA services for importers
CBSA Assessment Revenue Management initiative: Delayed implementation
A planned implementation timeline will be added once operations normalize, following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read more about the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) project.
Release of goods regulated by other government departments
The CBSA decommissioned the legacy Other Government Department (OGD) release service options OGD PARS (SO463) and OGD RMD (SO471) as of .
As of , release requests submitted using the OGD legacy service options will be rejected with an error message of “Invalid Function Type Code”. Transactions that are submitted using these service options prior to that date will still be processed.
Please refer to Customs Notice 20-21 for the release service options that remain available to you.
Relevant customs notices
For information related to temporary measures such as extension of timeframes, late accounting penalties, importation of emergency goods and system changes:
- Customs Notice 20-19, Certain Goods Remission Order (COVID-19)
- Customs Notice 20-12, COVID-19: Tariff Classification and Other Information to Import Medical Supplies
- Customs Notice 20-11, Extension of Timeframes for Payment of Customs Duties and GST (COVID-19)
- Customs Notice 20-10, Waiver of Late Accounting Penalties (COVID-19)
- Customs Notice 20-09, Changes in Requesting an Extension to the 90-day Period to Submit Corrections
- Customs Notice 20-08, Imported Goods for Emergency Use in Response to COVID-19
Statements of account
If you are an importer or customs broker acting on an importer’s behalf, you should have paid the full amount of duties and taxes owing on your statements of account by . The payment deferral period ended on this date.
We may refer an unpaid account to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for collection activities. If you cannot make a full payment, the CRA may consider a payment arrangement. Late payment penalty and interest may be charged on overdue accounts. You can submit a request for a review for late accounting penalties and late transaction payment interest to the CBSA.
We will need written evidence from you, the importer, or your customs broker, of any payments made to the CBSA against your March, April, May and June 2020 statements of account. We will use this evidence to consider each request to waive interest or penalties on a case-by-case basis.
The CBSA can use a bond posted as financial security for an importation of goods transaction to cover unpaid statements of account. However, we will only do so after exhausting other reasonable efforts to collect from importers or owners.
- Bulletin 63: End of the deferral period for the payment of duties and taxes
- Government provides update on sales tax and duty payment deferral
- How to file a review for: Late accounting penalties and late transaction payment interest
- Commercial payments and accounts
- Customs debt collection
- COVID-19 Economic Response Plan
- Accounting for Imported Goods and Payment of Duties Regulations
- Questions about the current status of an account? Visit our Contact us page for help
Changes to CBSA services for exporters
As of , paper-based reporting is no longer available. You must now submit monthly Summary Reporting Program (SRP) reports via the CERS Portal.
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 could not meet the original , timeline.
Special Import Measures Act activities: Schedule changes
The CBSA has revised schedules for a number of Special Import Measures Act (SIMA) activities due to COVID-19:
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Travel restrictions, exemptions and advice
- Information on importing and exporting
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