Strike Threat Forces Canada to Phase-In CARM

April 24, 2024 – The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) announced last week that it will delay the launch of
its Customs Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) system for “trade chain partners” to October. It will
continue with its planned launch on May 13th, but only internally, for use within the agency.
CBSA says a strike threat by the Public Service Alliance of Canada prompted the announcement. CBSA says if a
strike occurs, it will affect Canada’s trade operations. CBSA is asking trade partners to continue to operate as they
have in the meantime.
CBSA says the benefits of CARM for trade partners include:

  • Eliminating cumbersome and time-consuming paper-based processes;
  • Providing better tools that will allow the CBSA to focus its compliance and enforcement efforts on potential bad actors;
  • Improving functionality for importers through the ability to enroll in commercial programs, submit accounting documents, and receive notifications through their CARM Client Portal account.

CBSA adds that the internal rollout of CARM next month will allow customs agents to identify errors and
discrepancies in duties and tax submissions

CBP to Ramp Up Enforcement in Entry Type 86 Pilot

April 24, 2024 – U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP’s) acting Commissioner Troy Miller provided remarks last week updating the trade community on CBP’s Entry Type 86 pilot. Miller stated that CBP is seeing some Entry Type 86 filers “abusing” the test by providing vague and inaccurate data for de minimis shipments.

Although the pilot “created new business opportunities,” the agency found “many instances where filers aren’t doing their part to validate the data they are submitting.” Miller cited examples of “junk data” such as weight and value ratios that do not align and vague cargo descriptions like “freight of all kinds” or “daily necessities.” He also cited an example of shipments seized by CBP that
contained xylazine, a horse tranquilizer that is resistant to the anti-overdose drug Narcan when combined with

CBP also allegedly found that the same filers providing “junk data” are charging “as little as $0.10 per entry type
86 transaction,” creating an unlevel playing field for customs brokers who comply and provide accurate data to

Miller stated that CBP is increasing its enforcement to ensure that “compliant and responsible customs brokers are
participating in the Entry Type 86 test.” 

China Objects to and Section 301 Investigation and Tariff Increase

April 24, 2024 – China’s Ministry of Commerce announced its opposition last week to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative’s launch of a new Section 301 investigation targeting China’s maritime, logistics and shipbuilding sectors as well as the President Joe Biden’s call for a “tripling” of the existing Section 301 tariffs on Chinese steel and aluminum.

According to China, these actions are unilateral and protectionist, lacking factual basis. China’s Ministry of
Commerce argues that U.S. shipbuilding lost its competitive edge due to over-protectionism, citing U.S. subsidies to its industries and a WTO ruling against existing tariffs for Chinese intellectual property theft.

China’s Ministry of Commerce also warns that these measures could disrupt global supply chains.

Read the Chinese government’s news releases here and here for more information.

Former Negotiators Expect US to Pressure Canada & Mexico

April 24, 2024 – Former trade negotiators say they expect tariffs to continue to be a part of U.S. trade policy for the foreseeable future, whether the Democratic or Republican presidential nominee is elected in the fall.

The former officials from the Office of the U.S. Trade representative (USTR) reportedly told attendees of a webinar hosted by Washington International Trade Association last week say that U.S. tariffs are an important form of leverage to negotiate market access. Former USTR general counsel Steve Vaughn reportedly said, “Unless you have some way to get leverage on these countries to get them to come to the table, you’re not going to get any significant deal.”

Collectively, the former USTR negotiators worked under the Obama, Trump and Biden Administrations. They agreed that sunset negotiations of the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement, which won’t begin until 2026, will put added pressure on Mexico and Canada. As examples, negotiators may discuss Chinese steel that is exported to the U.S. under USMCA, and whether Canada “has really lived up to the bargain” on opening its dairy market to U.S. exports.

FMC Announces Second RFI on MTDI

April 24, 2024 – The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) published a second request for information (RFI) on the
Maritime Transportation Data Initiative (MTDI) in the Federal Register this month. FMC Commissioner Carl Bentzel released a statement last week explaining his goal to gain more public input on how shipping information should
be shared to improve operational efficiency.

The first RFI sought general input on data communication between transportation and service providers and
shippers or other users of the information. The second RFI published this month focuses on recommendations from
the MTDI Report regarding transparency, data accuracy, and cargo availability.

Commissioner Bentzel says that feedback from both RFIs will inform a final report to be issued later this year. The
report could be preceded by a third RFI to address additional concerns like cybersecurity and smart containers.

The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) is also finalizing tasks mandated by the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of
2022 (OSRA – 2022). Commissioner Bentzel mentions in his statement that the MTDI aims to mitigate the conflict that leads to demurrage and detention charges through better communication of scheduling and movement of
cargo. He emphasizes the importance of public input in shaping the MTDI process.

CBP to Announce Broker Education Accreditors Soon

April 24, 2024 – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is expected to announce the names of approved
accreditors for the agency’s continuing education for licensed customs brokers (LCBs) “in the coming months,” along with the start date and the hours required.

The Director of CBP’s Cargo Security and Controls Division Shari McCann updated attendees of NCBFAA’s annual
conference last week, saying the agency is “in the final review and selection stage.”

McCann added that CBP will also offer its own education that will qualify for the broker education requirement.
The annual CBP Trade Summit and certain CBP webinars would also count toward the requirement. However,
events and courses taken prior to the start date will not be included in the count, including the 2024 Trade Summit held last month in Philadelphia.

CBP published its final rule on continuing education for LCBs last June following a comment period. CBP is
requiring at least 36 hours of continuing education credits for individual brokers. McCann said that the current
triennial period will require less than 36 hours because CBP is changing the rules “midstream.” Details will be
included in a CBP notice and on the agency’s website when the announcement is ready for publication.

Senators Support Aluminum Manufacturers Against AD/CVD

April 24, 2024 – A bipartisan group of senators wrote Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo this month expressing their support for antidumping and countervailing duty (AD/CVD) petitions filed by the U.S. Aluminum Extruders Coalition, a group of 14 U.S. aluminum extrusion manufacturers and the United Steelworkers Union (USW).

The letter was signed by Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Mike Braun (R-IN) and included two more Republicans, eight Democrats, and Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

The letter emphasizes how foreign countries “export a high volume of aluminum extrusions at unfair prices,” creating an unlevel playing field for American workers. The investigations cover imports of aluminum extrusions from China, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, and Vietnam.

The U.S. Department of Commerce initiated these investigations in October of 2023.

BIS Modifies EAR to Accommodate AUKUS

April 24, 2024 – The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is enforcing a new rule it published last week. This rule
modifies the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to put the Australia-UK-US Trilateral Security Partnership (AUKUS) into action.

The EAR changes now align with how export licenses are treated for Australia and the UK with Canada’s existing
rules. As of last Friday, BIS has:

  • Removed license requirements for national security column 1 (NS1), regional stability column 1 (RS1), and
    missile technology column 1 (MT1) reasons for control for the destinations of Australia and the UK;
  • Removed license requirements for 0A919 items to Australia and the UK, further aligning their treatment
    with Canada;
  • Removed military end-use and end-user-based license requirements for exports, reexports, and transfers (in-country) of certain cameras, systems, or related components; and
  • Revised treatment of significant items (SI) (i.e., hot section technology for the development, production or overhaul of commercial aircraft engines, components, and systems) controlled under ECCN 9E003.a.1
    through a.6, a.8, .h, .i, and .l, and related controls to allow these items to be exported, reexported, or
    transferred (in-country) to or within Australia and the UK without a license.

Although the rules went into effect on April 19, 2024, BIS is accepting comments. The deadline for comments is June 3, 2024.