With the implementation of eManifest, highway carriers transporting goods into Canada are required to transmit cargo and conveyance data electronically to the CBSA prior to arrival. The cargo and conveyance data must be received and validated by the CBSA a minimum of one hour before the shipment arrives at the border.
The CBSA completed the deployment of electronic systems (Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and eManifest Portal) for highway carriers to transmit advance cargo and conveyance data in 2011.
On May 6, 2015, regulatory amendments supporting the eManifest initiative were published. eManifest requirements for highway carriers are now mandatory and the following implementation timelines apply:
- May 6, 2015, to July 10, 2015: the CBSA will provide carriers with a period of transition during which penalties for non-compliance will not be issued. The Agency will work closely with carriers on corrective measures to help them comply with eManifest requirements.
- July 10, 2015, to January 10, 2016: carriers who do not comply with eManifest requirements may be issued zero-rated penalties (non-monetary) under the CBSA’s Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS).
- Beginning January 10, 2016: carriers who do not comply with eManifest requirements may be issued monetary AMPS penalties
The eManifest Portal
The eManifest Portal is an option developed by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to allow the trade community to electronically transmit their pre-arrival information through the Internet. It was developed primarily for small- to medium-sized businesses to facilitate their compliance and ease the transition from paper reporting to pre-arrival electronic data transmission.
The eManifest Portal is currently available for highway carriers and freight forwarders to transmit pre-arrival data. Warehouse operators and brokers will also have access to the Portal to view data they have received from the CBSA.
To transmit data using the eManifest Portal, highway carriers must apply for a “Shared Secret.”
The eManifest Portal features many self-serve functions such as the ability to:
- securely transmit trade data to the CBSA;
- confirm receipt of information and receive notifications from the CBSA;
- verify status of the trade data, whether it is transmitted through the Portal or by electronic data interchange (EDI);
- receive system messages from the CBSA updating users on important information related to their cross-border activities; and
- access online help and reference material.
There are two types of accounts in the eManifest Portal:
- User Account: Each person who works in the Portal must first set up this type of account. To set up a User Account, the user will need to provide information such as their name, e-mail address and telephone number.
- Business Account: set up by an authorized representative of the business, called an Account Owner. They will need a valid client identifier and Shared Secret.
A client identifier is a unique number that identifies the trade chain partner. For highway carriers and freight forwarders, the client identifier is a carrier code. A carrier code is a four-digit unique identifier that is assigned by the CBSA to a carrier. All highway carriers must have a valid, CBSA-issued carrier code.
For warehouse operators, the client identifier is a sublocation code, and for brokers it is an account security number.
A Shared Secret is a temporary access code that a business requires to create a Portal Business Account in the eManifest Portal. The CBSA issues it to businesses that request access to the Portal and must be used within 90 days of the issue date. The Shared Secret is used to authenticate and validate a client when creating an eManifest Portal Business Account. Only the CBSA and the authorized representative of the company have access to this information.
eManifest Portal users must use a computer that has internet access, and one of the either Internet Explorer 8 and above, or Firefox 2.0 and above
For additional information on the eManifest regulations, visit the CBSA eManifest site; for more information on data requirements visit the eManifest Portal Help and Support page. To access the Portal, select the eManifest Portal Log In link in the right hand menu. Finally, for information on obtaining a CBSA-issued carrier code, visit the Commercial Carriers section of the CBSA website.