CUSMA/USMCA will come into force on July 1, 2020, at which time increased and more complex Regional Value Content (RVC) requirements for both vehicles and automotive parts will be effective.  The RVC for passenger vehicles and lights trucks will increase to 66% on July 1 and for heavy trucks, it will be 60%.  The chart below summarizes the transition of those requirements to their final RVC of 75% and 70%, respectively.

Class of Vehicle Timing RVC – Net Cost
Passenger Vehicles July 1, 2020 66%
July 1, 2021 69%
July 1, 2022 72%
July 1, 2023 and thereafter 75%
Light Trucks July 1, 2020 66%
July 1, 2021 69%
July 1, 2022 72%
July 1, 2023 and thereafter 75%
Heavy Trucks

 

 

 

July 1, 2020 60%
July 1, 2024 64%
July 1, 2027 and thereafter 70%

Similarly, the regional value content requirements (RVC) for automotive parts will increase, but determining the applicable RVC for a particular part will be more complex.  The RVC for a part will depend not only on its description and tariff classification, but also on how it is used and into which of the parts categories it fits.  To qualify as originating, some parts may require a change in tariff classification requirement, an RVC or both.  Where a part must satisfy an RVC requirement, the following chart generally describes the RVC that will apply following the applicable transition periods, based on the category of part and the type of vehicle into which it will be incorporated.  The transition period for the listed parts categories for use in passenger vehicles and light trucks is 3 years, ending July 1, 2023.  For heavy trucks, the transition period will end on July 1, 2027.  The higher RVC for the listed engines and gear boxes incorporated into Other Vehicles (e.g. ambulances, motor homes, vehicles for the transport of more than 15 persons, etc.) kicks in immediately on July 1, 2020.

Detailed descriptions of the Parts Categories can be found in Tables A.1 – G of the Uniform Regulations . The Uniform Regulations were posted on June 3, 2020 on the USTR website and, as of June 28, remain subject to legal review and authentication.

Most vehicle producers also face new certification requirements in the form of:

  1. Minimum Steel purchase requirements where 70% of corporate purchases must be originating;
  2. Minimum Aluminum purchase requirements where 70% of corporate purchases must be originating; and
  3. Minimum Labour Value Content requirements where a certain minimum percentage of the vehicle must be produced using high-wage labour.

The detailed requirements of these three requirements remain somewhat unclear, but it is possible, if not likely, that vehicle producers will look to their auto parts suppliers for information that will support the vehicle producer’s certifications of compliance.  While the U.S. Government, as part of its Updated Interim Implementing Instructions (June 16, 2020), has issued non-binding guidance on their intended application of certain of these requirements, further guidance has not yet been provided by the Canadian Government.

We will continue to monitor for updates.  Please do not hesitate to contact me if you would like further information, training, or other support to implement the new CUSMA/USMCA requirements.  I can be reached at (416) 350-1234 or at heather@lexsage.com.

The Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA or USMCA) will introduce new and complex requirements for the automotive industry.  Not only will vehicle producers face increased Regional Value Content requirements starting July 1, 2020, but they will be required to meet the following requirements:

  1. minimum purchase requirements for North American steel and aluminum;
  2. labour value content requirements that at lease a certain portion of each vehicle be produced using high-wage labour (US $16/C $20.88 average wage rate); and
  3. certain parts (Super Core Parts) incorporated into a vehicle must be originating.

Both the CUSMA/USMCA Uniform Regulations posted on June 3, 2020 and the non-binding guidance issued by the U.S. Customs Authority (CBP)  in the form of Interim Implementing Instructions have started to provide some clarification regarding how the new requirements will work, at least from the U.S. perspective.  However, the Uniform Regulations are not yet final.  The posted version includes the following statement: “Subject to Legal Review in English, Spanish and French for Accuracy, Clarity and Consistency Subject to Authentication of English, Spanish and French Versions”.  We anticipate that the final Uniform Regulations will be published on or before July 1.

While Canada has provided helpful clarification on the new CUSMA certification of origin and certain other import requirements, there does not appear to be much information on their CUSMA Webpage regarding implementation of the new automotive rules.  There remain questions about what is required under the new automotive rules, including what will be required from automotive parts makers to support a vehicle producer’s Labour Value Content certification.

The updated version of the U.S. issued Interim Implementing Instructions provides the following direction:

  1. U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP) understands that the trade may need time to adjust business practices to comply with the new requirements under the USMCA (CUSMA), particularly relating to the preferential tariff treatment of goods. The instructions go on to state that during the first six months after entry into force, CBP will focus on supporting the trade’s efforts to fully comply with the USMCA requirements, including providing webinars and other outreach efforts to educate the trade;
  2. Importantly, it states that Importers are required to exercise reasonable care when making a claim under USMCA (CUSMA), including ensuring that they are in possession of a complete and valid certification of origin at the time of making a claim and meeting all recordkeeping obligations;
  3. However, the instructions go on to provide that In order to provide the trade sufficient time to adjust to the new requirements and in consideration of the business process changes necessary to achieve full compliance, CBP may in appropriate cases show restraint in enforcement during the six-month period after USMCA’s entry-into-force.  Note that it does not say that the RVC and certification of origin requirements will be delayed;
  4. In connection with a vehicle producer’s requirement to meet minimum Labour Value Content requirements it states that vehicle producers will be required to submit details about their auto parts suppliers (including the average hourly wage rate), if they rely on that supplier to meet the Labour Value Content requirement.  The auto parts industry, wanting to support their vehicle producing customers, may find this requirement quite challenging; and
  5. Automotive producers, exporters, and importers will be allowed until December 31, 2020 to obtain and submit necessary certification and documentation to support their Labour Value Content certification, steel certification, and aluminum certification for passenger vehicles, light trucks, and heavy trucks.

We expect to see final Uniform Regulations and a further updated CBP Interim Implementing Instructions before July 1 and with just over a week before CUSMA/USMCA comes into effect, we will continue to watch for developments and clarifications.

Please do not hesitate to contact Heather Innes (416) 350-1234 if you have questions or would like assistance managing any of these requirements.

The Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), also referred to as the United States-Canada-Mexico Agreement (USMCA), comes into effect on July 1, 2020.  Are you ready?

The full CUSMA Agreement was signed in November of 2018, and later amended in December 2019.  In April of this year each of the three parties notified that they had completed their respective ratification processes.  This meant that the agreement could be implemented on July 1.

The CUSMA Uniform Regulations containing important clarifying details, were posted by the United States on June 3 with the qualifier that they remain subject to legal review and authentication by each of the three countries. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection posted non-binding guidance in the form of Interim Implementing Instructions that were updated on    June 16 (“CBP Implementing Instructions”). The CBP Implementing Instructions provide insight as to how the U.S. intends to implement many of the CUSMA requirements.  There were some surprising interpretations regarding the Labour Content Value requirement for the auto industry.  Similar guidance from the Canadian government, particularly on some of the more complex automotive rules has not been published.

All said, we are faced with little time to implement some complex, and in some instances, unclear, requirements to ensure that goods continue to enjoy preferential duty treatment when exported/imported across North America.

CUSMA introduces many changes to the rules for securing preferential duty treatment when your parts, material inputs and finished products cross a North American border. CUSMA is NOT NAFTA and having a NAFTA process and NAFTA certificates of origin will not be enough to secure and support duty free treatment for goods that are imported/exported in North America.  If your products or production inputs don’t meet the CUSMA origin requirements, or if you don’t secure or are not able to provide the required CUSMA certification of origin, your products may be subjected to duties.

For many industries, the rules of origin and the methods of qualifying are similar to those under NAFTA.  However, for others, such as the automotive and textile industries, the rules have changed and compliance with the new rules will require a detailed reassessment of the goods that you export to customers in the United States and/or Mexico.

For all industries, the certification process has changed, and CUSMA certifications of origin will be required to support your claim for CUSMA preferential tariff treatment.  As of July 1, 2020, NAFTA certificates of origin will no longer qualify.  Nor will NAFTA advanced rulings remain valid for imports/exports made on or after July 1.

With little time to prepare for CUSMA, many organizations are left scrambling.  With the July 1 entry date fast approaching, here are some suggestions:

  1. Assign and train designated individuals, including a CUSMA Lead within your organization to organize, complete and be accountable for product assessments and CUSMA certifications of origin;
  2. Complete an inventory and detailed CUSMA assessment of your current and future product programs. To effectively conduct your assessment you need to: (i) start with the correct HS tariff codes; (ii) collect complete CUSMA based information from your own suppliers to support your review; (iii) ensure that you are working with the appropriate CUSMA product rule; and (iv) ensure that your calculations comply with detailed CUSMA rules;
  3. Address shortfalls where your products don’t meet the CUSMA origin requirements. If your customers demand CUSMA originating goods and your goods don’t qualify, you risk losing critical business.  If your products don’t meet the requirements, establish a process that includes coordination with your Legal and Customs teams to identify options to attain qualifying status;
  4. Complete your CUSMA certifications of origin. These are not NAFTA certificates of origin and while CUSMA does not require a specific format, it does require the inclusion of certain information;
  5. Ensure that your document systems and retention processes meet the CUSMA documentary support and retention requirements; and
  6. When in doubt, seek an Advanced Ruling: The CUSMA rules are complex and, in some instances, unclear.  If your organization is not certain that your good meets the CUSMA origin qualifying requirements, work with your Legal team to seek an Advanced Ruling.

We continue to monitor the implementation of CUSMA and expect further clarification from both the Canadian and U.S. governments.

Should you wish further information or assistance for your organization, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Heather Innes at (416) 350-1234 or heather@lexsage.com.

On May 20, 2020, Prince Edward Island’s Premier, Dennis King, announced that the province will begin the approval process for seasonal residents starting on June 1, 2020. In order to be approved, seasonal residents must show that they are the owners of the residence in P.E.I., and must also guarantee that they will self-isolate for 14 days.

Members of the NEXUS program must be very cautious when entering P.E.I. as seasonal residents. The CBSA requires that all seasonal residents prepare a list of goods that will remain in Canada. In the past, members of the NEXUS program have had their NEXUS cards revoked because they did not have a complete list of personal effects prepared, and had to go through the appeals process to be reinstated in the NEXUS program.

What do I have to include on my list?

The CBSA explains in Memorandum D2-2-3 that seasonal residents must prepare a detailed list in duplicate of all personal effects that are to be imported, meaning all the personal goods and household goods that will remain in Canada.

The CBSA requires that the list include the make, model, serial numbers (where possible) and approximate value of each item. General household items can be listed in a group with the overall value (e.g., kitchen utensils –$XXX). Seasonal residents can also use the BSF186 form, which can be downloaded here. The CBSA defines “household effects” as furniture and goods that are found in a home, and tools and equipment that are used in the maintenance of a home.

Do construction materials and electrical fixtures count as household effects?

The CBSA does not include construction material, electrical fixtures, or any other goods that are permanently attached or incorporated into a home to be “household effects”. These goods must be declared at the border to the CBSA Officer.

How can I declare goods that are going to be delivered, or brought into Canada later on by my family members?

If some goods are scheduled to be delivered or brought in at a later date, a second list with all “goods to follow” must also be provided to the CBSA. The list of “goods to follow” must be provided when seasonal residents first arrive, despite the fact that the goods are going to be imported at a later date.

What happens if I did not complete my list?

If a seasonal resident has not completed a list, the CBSA may ask that a list be prepared prior to entering Canada. However, NEXUS members should be extremely careful and should always prepare a list prior to arriving at the border in order to avoid jeopardizing their NEXUS status.

For more information, please contact LexSage Professional Corporation at 416-307-4168 or at cyndee@lexsage.com.

On March 26, 2020, the Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) notified certain importers under verification that the CBSA was temporarily suspending trade compliance activities due to COVID-19 – see The CBSA Temporarily Suspends Trade Compliance Activities due to COVID-19.

On May 19, 2020, importers received an update from the CBSA informing external stakeholders that the suspension has been extended until further notice.  A CBSA Verification Officer wrote the following in an email:

“The details of this suspension, both in terms of scope and duration is currently being reviewed by NHQ.  For now, we will continue to hold off on trade compliance interactions with stakeholders. The CBSA is reviewing this approach and will have more information in the coming days. For greater clarity, the CBSA is continuing to process drawback claims, applications for the Duties Relief Program, and B2 requests for adjustments, and these are unaffected by this temporary suspension. If your company wishes to continue the verification process, please email me. ”

What this means is that all trade compliance verification (audit) activities with respect to Canadian customs laws (e.g., origin, tariff classification, valuation, etc.) continue to be suspended and no end date to the suspension is being provided.The CBSA Verification Officers are not being called back to work at this time.

However, this is just a delay in trade compliance verification activities – during the COVID-19 crisis, new trade compliance verification activities will not commence and importers under verification will not be contacted by CBSA compliance officers to provide information to the CBSA. Importers who were under trade compliance verification at the time of the temporary suspension started should take the opportunity to continue to gather information requested by the CBSA and should continue to research any issues that may be under verification.

That being said, even though trade compliance verification activities are suspended, importers still must comply with Canada’s import and customs laws. Trade compliance activities actions will start again. Any tariff classification, origin, valuation or other errors made during the COVID-19 temporary shutdown period may be the subject of a future trade compliance verification and enforcement action.

If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact Cyndee Todgham Cherniak at 416-307-4168 or at cyndee@lexsage.com.

Canada has indicated that the Canada-U.S. border will remain closed to non-essential travel until June 21, 2020.  “Non-essential” travel includes travel that is considered as tourism or recreational in nature.

The restrictions may be extended again.  On March 21, the restrictions on essential travel across the border were implemented for a 30-day period in an effort to stem the transmission of COVID-19.  The 30-day period was thereafter extended to May 21, 2020. The restriction may be extended again.

That being said, the Canada-U.S. border has remained open to trade in goods and services. The partial closure of the border does not affect essential travel, including truck and rail traffic carrying food, fuel, essential medicines, personal protective equipment, and other goods essential to supply chains.

Individuals who must travel for essential work (e.g., nurses) and for urgent reasons continue to be able to cross the border.  Several categories of people are permitted to travel because they provide critical services, if they have no symptoms. These include people who:

  • are making necessary medical deliveries required for patient care, such as:
    • cells;
    • organs;
    • tissues;
    • blood and blood products; and
    • other similar lifesaving human body parts,
  • work in the trade and transportation sector who are important for the movement of goods and people, including:
    • truck drivers; and
    • crew on any plane, train or marine vessel,
  • cross the border regularly to go to work, including in the health care sector or critical infrastructure workers; or,
  • have to cross the border to provide or receive essential services, including emergency responders and personnel providing essential services to Canadians related to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Flights between Canada and the United States still continue, however there are fewer flights per day.

For more information about Canada’s import restrictions, please contact Cyndee Todgham Cherniak at 416-307-4168 or at cyndee@lexsage.com.  There is more information posted on the LexSage website.

The Canadian Minister of National Revenue (“Minister”) may, under subsection 231.2(3) of the Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. 1 (5th Supp.) and subsection 289(3) of the Excise Tax Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. E-15, seek information from third parties in order to look for tax cheats. The request by the Minister is known as an “Unnamed Persons Requirement” or “UPR”.  An UPR is filed by the Minister (the Attorney General of Canada on behalf of the Minister) with the Federal Court of Canada to seek an order for a person (a third party) to disclose specified information relating to an unnamed person or unnamed persons.

The Federal Court of Appeal unanimously upheld an UPR in Roofmart Ontario Inc. v. Minister of National Revenue, 2020 FCA 85.  In this case, the Minister filed an application with the Federal Court of Canada for an UPR and included a supporting affidavit from the CRA official responsible for addressing the issue. The application was brought against Roofmart Ontario Inc. (“Roofmart”) and targeted the following unnamed persons:

  • Roofmart customers whose total annual purchase and/or billed amount was $20,000 or greater (for the period from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2017); and,
  • Roofmart customers whose total annual purchase and/or billed amount was $10,000 or greater (for the period from January 1, 2018 to June 30, 2018).

The Minister sought the following information related to the group of persons described above:

a) The customers’ legal name, business or operating name, contact person, business address, postal code, and all telephone numbers on file;

b) The customers’ business number, if known;

c) The customers’ itemized transaction details including invoice date, invoice number, total sale amount, method of payment, and address of delivery; and,

d) All bank account information for the customers (including transit, institution, and account numbers) from credit applications and/or otherwise maintained by Roofmart in its records.

It is important to note that Roofmart itself was not under tax audit at the time the Minister made the application. There was no suggestion that Roofmart had done anything wrong.  Roofmart opposed the application for an UPR to protect the privacy of its customers.

According to the legislative provisions, the Federal Court of Appeal may grant the UPR if the court is satisfied by information on oath that:

(a) the person or group is ascertainable; and,

(b) the requirement is made to verify compliance by the person or persons in the group with any duty or obligation under this Act.

The Federal Court of Canada held that the statutory preconditions were satisfied in this case. The judge concluded that the persons targeted by the application were ascertainable. In his view, the total annual purchase requirement was sufficient to establish the target group of residential and commercial contractors and their identities. The judge was also satisfied, on the evidence, that the Minister sought the information to verify the unnamed persons’ compliance with the Income Tax Act.  Since the Excise Tax Act provision is similar to the Income Tax Act provision, the same result could have occurred if the Minister had sought the UPR under the Excise Tax Act.

The Federal Court of Appeal upheld the Federal Court of Canada decision and rejected almost all of the arguments made by the appellant.  The Federal Court of Appeal remarked that there are only two statutory preconditions to the issuance of an UPR.  In this case, the two preconditions were satisfied.  There used to be other preconditions, but Parliament amended the legislation and removed other preconditions thereby giving more powers to  the CRA.  In 1996, Parliament repealed paragraphs 231.2(3)(c) and (d) of the Income Tax Act, doing away with two preconditions: that there be reasonable grounds to believe the subject of an UPR had not complied with the Act; and that the information or documents requested were not otherwise more readily available.

As a result, of this decision, it is clear that the Minister can ask the Federal Court of Canada to issue an UPR against a third party (such as Roofmart) and require that party to undertake a review of their records and provide information about their customers (contractors who meet the identified criteria).  The information can be used to identify tax cheats and commence audits.  Companies have few arguments that the court will accept to stop the issuance of the UPR.

If you have received a notice of an application for an UPR, please contact Cyndee Todgham Cherniak at 416-307-4168 or at cyndee@lexsage.com.

It is unclear whether the import prohibition set out in the Customs Tariff for Tariff Code Item 9897 prohibits goods made in China’s detention camps.  Tariff Item 9897 prohibits the importation of a number of goods, including “[g]oods manufactured or produced wholly or in part by prison labour”.  Unlike the United States, Canada’s import prohibition does not extend the import prohibition to “goods manufactured by forced labour”.

Under Canadian law, any goods can be imported unless there is an explicit prohibition in a law or regulation. All of the prohibitions in Tariff Item 9897 are unilaterally selected and listed by Canada, and do not require approval by the United Nations or any international organization. Since Canada does not specifically exclude goods manufactured by forced labour, there is a real question as to whether the prohibition would apply to goods manufactured by Uyghurs in detention camps.  This is why I want to raise the issue.

D-Memorandum D9-1-6 “Goods Manufactured or Produced Wholly or in Part by Prison Labour”, which is the CBSA’s administrative guidance on this matter, is silent about goods produced in Uyghur detention camps.  As a result, the CBSA officers on the front line are not being told to detain goods manufactured by forced labour and contrary to human rights.

Canada can amend the Customs Tariff to ensure any prohibition is clear as to what goods are prohibited.  Canada can also add clarity to D-Memorandum D9-1-6, which has not been amended since 2012.  I hope that Canada takes this important step.

As reported by China Law Blog, on May 1, 2020, United States CBP issued a withhold release order (“WRO”) against hair products manufactured by a Xinjiang company called Hetian Haolin Hair Accessories Co. Ltd.  There are many WROs against goods from China.  Canadian companies should be mindful of the WROs as goods transshipped via the United States can be detained.  More importantly, the WROs, including the May 1, 2020 WRO, provide guidance to Canadian companies who wish to act responsibility and do not wish to support the human rights abuses in the Uyghur detention camps.

The Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) has created a new dedicated Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (“CUMSA”) web-page on which implementation information will be posted to assist importers and exporters. CUSMA / USMCA / NAFTA 2.0 is scheduled to enter into force on July 1, 2020 and there will be no transition period.  This means that importers and exporters must be aware of new developments and must update their compliance processes and systems quickly. The CBSA has indicated that new information will be posted as it becomes available.

So far, the CBSA has posted information on the following changes that importers need to know about:

Canada, the United States, and Mexico are currently negotiating the Uniform Regulations.  When the North American Free Trade Agreement entered into effect in 1994, it was the Uniform Regulations that contained many of the important details about customs and import procedures.

For more information, please contact Cyndee Todgham Cherniak at 416-307-4168 or at cyndee@lexsage.com.  We have posted other articles about CUSMA implementation, such as:

What are Canada’s de minimis thresholds for imports by courier?

Are You Prepared for CUSMA Entering into Effect on July 1, 2020?

Certification of Origin Requirements under CUSMA not the same as NAFTA

Update: When CUSMA enters into effect, NAFTA advance rulings are no longer valid

The CBSA announced new LVS threshold for use after CUSMA implementation

On May 6, 2020, the Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) published Customs Notice 20-19 to provide information for Certain Goods Remission Order (COVID-19), SOR-2020-101 (“Remission Order”) under the Customs Tariff.  In order to help the fight against COVID-19, the Remission Order allows for the relief of customs duty for eligible PPE and medical supply goods which were imported on or after May 5, 2020.

What goods are entitled to duty relief?

The CBSA has provided two lists of goods, in Appendix A and Appendix B. In Appendix A, the CBSA has listed certain PPE goods which are eligible for relief under the Remission Order.

The CBSA has also listed certain goods in Appendix B for other medical supplies that are not subject to the Remission Order, because the goods are already eligible for Most-Favoured Nation duty-free tariff treatment.

See the goods listed in Appendix A below:

Tariff Item Description*
Face and eye protection
3926.90.99 Plastic face-masks, without mechanical parts, with or without a replaceable non-woven filter
6307.90.99 Face-masks of other textile materials
Gloves
3926.20.91 Other disposable plastic gloves
3926.20.92 Non-disposable plastic gloves
4015.11.00 Surgical rubber gloves
4015.19.90 Other rubber gloves
6116.10.00 Knitted or crocheted gloves which have been impregnated, coated or covered with plastics or rubber
6216.00.00 Textile work gloves that are not knitted or crocheted
Protective Garments and the Like
3926.20.93 Other articles of apparel and clothing accessories, of plastics, containing not more than 25% by weight of woven fabrics of man-made fibres, coated on both sides with polymers of vinyl chloride
3926.20.94 Other articles of apparel and clothing accessories, of plastics, combined with knitted or woven fabrics, bolducs, nonwovens or felt, containing woven fabrics of more than 50% by weight of silk
3926.20.95 Other articles of apparel and clothing accessories, of plastics, combined with knitted or woven fabrics, bolducs, nonwovens or felt
3926.20.99 Other articles of apparel and clothing accessories, of plastics
4015.90.90 Other garments made of rubber sheeting
6113.00.90 Other garments, made up of knitted or crocheted fabrics of heading 59.03, 59.06 or 59.07
6114.20.00 Other garments, knitted or crocheted, of cotton
6114.30.00 Other garments, knitted or crocheted, of man-made fibres
6114.90.00 Other garments, knitted or crocheted, of other textile materials
6210.10.90 Other garments made up of felt or nonwovens whether or not impregnated, coated, covered or laminated (fabrics of heading 56.02 or 56.03)
6210.40.90 Other men’s or boys’ garments of woven fabrics that are impregnated, coated, covered or laminated (fabrics of headings 59.03, 59.06 or 59.07)
6210.50.90 Other women’s or girls’ garments of woven fabrics that are impregnated, coated, covered or laminated (fabrics of headings 59.03, 59.06 or 59.07). This includes unisex garments.
6211.32.00 Coveralls (men’s or boys’ – of cotton)
6211.33.00 Coveralls (men’s or boys’ – of man-made fibres)
6211.39.90 Other garments (men’s or boys’ – of other textile materials)
6211.42.00 Other garments of cotton (women’s or girls’)
6211.43.90 Other garments of man-made fibres (women’s or girls’)
6211.49.99 Other garments of other textile materials (women’s or girls’)
6217.10.00 Other made up clothing accessories
6505.00.10 Hair-nets
Disinfectants/ Sterilization products
2208.90.29 Alcohol solution – undenatured, 75% ethyl alcohol
3808.94.10 Hand sanitizer, in liquid or gel form, or rubs and wipes impregnated with alcohol or other disinfectants, if in packages <1.36 kg each; Other disinfectant preparations put up in forms or packings for retail sale in packages <1.36 kg each, containing alcohol, benzalkonium chloride solution or peroxyacids, or other disinfectants such as hydrogen peroxide. This includes sodium dichloroisocyanurate (NaDCC) and calcium hypochlorite (65-70% active chlorine).
Wipes
6307.10.10 Industrial shop towels, hemmed, of a width of 43 cm or more but not exceeding 56 cm and a length of 43 cm or more but not exceeding 61 cm, of unbleached woven fabrics solely of cotton or of cotton and man-made fibres, measuring per single yarn 420 decitex to 1,000 decitex and having not less than 78 yarns but not more than 133 yarns per 10 cm in the warp and not less than 78 yarns but not more than 137 yarns per 10 cm in the weft, of a weight of 135 g/m² or more but not exceeding 203 g/m²
6307.10.90 Other floor-cloths, dish-cloths, dusters and similar cleaning cloths
Medical Consumables
3926.90.99 Plastic urine bags, with outlet tap and non-return valve
6307.90.93 Other made up articles of textile (swabs), of cotton or other vegetable textile fibres, except solely of jute
6307.90.99 Other made up articles of textile (swabs), of other textile materials
Other Products
3401.11.90 Soap (in bar form)
3401.20.90 Soap (in liquid, powder or other forms)
3401.30.00 Organic surface-active products and preparations for washing the skin, in the form of liquid or cream and put up for retail sale, whether or not containing soap
3923.21.90 Sacks and bags (including cones), of polymers of ethylene
7324.90.00 Sanitary ware, Kidney basins (stainless steel)

*The CBSA has stated that descriptions above are for illustrative purposes only. Customs duty relief is applicable to all goods under these tariff items.

How can I receive duty relief on PPE and medical supply goods that I have imported?

The following conditions must be met for remission to be granted:

  1. The good was imported into Canada on or after May 5, 2020 and subject to customs duties;
  2. No other claim for relief of the customs duties has been granted under the Customs Tariffin respect of the good;
  3. The importer files, on request, the evidence or information that the Canada Border Services Agency requires to determine eligibility for remission;
  4. The importer agrees that it is subject, at any time, including after remission relief is provided, to review by the Canada Border Services Agency for the purpose of determining whether the information supplied by the importer under paragraph (c) is accurate and complete and whether the facts on which the Canada Border Services Agency relied or intends to rely to determine the eligibility for remission remain unchanged in all material respects; and
  5. At the time when the Canada Border Services Agency conducts the review referred to in paragraph (d), the Canada Border Services Agency must be able to conclude that the information supplied remains accurate and complete and that the facts remain unchanged in all material respects.

Claims for relief of duties must also include all relevant documentation to show the CBSA that the imported goods match the list in Appendix A, that the goods were imported on or after May 5, 2020, and that the goods were subject to customs duties. Relevant documents can include a copy of original Form B3-3, bill of lading, sales invoice, waybill, sales contract, etc.. Importers should be aware that this list of documents is not exhaustive, and should take care to save all relevant paperwork when importing goods.

If you are importing commercial goods and you would like to obtain relief of customs duties at the time of import, the special authorization code 20-304 must be entered in field 26 (Special Authority) of Form B3-3.

Relief can be claimed at the time of importation, or within two years of the date of importation.

Can I receive remission for goods that have already been imported?

Duty relief can only be claimed for goods imported on or after May 5, 2020. If an overpayment of customs duty has been identified on commercial importations because the Remission Order was applicable, a B2 Adjustment Form may be filed with the CBSA.

Where the Remission Order was applicable and customs duty has been paid on non-commercial importations, Form B2G, Informal Adjustment Request may be sent to the CBSA.

What else do I need to know?

Any goods imported will still be subject to examination by the CBSA at the time of importation. The goods will also be subject to post-release verification for compliance with the Tariff Classification, Valuation, Origin and Marking programs, and any other applicable CBSA programs or provisions.

If the CBSA finds that there has been non-compliance, the importer will have to pay the applicable duties and taxes, as well as applicable penalties and interest. Therefore, it is very important for importers to be careful when requesting relief under this Remission Order and to keep copies of their paperwork to avoid penalties and interest down the road.

For more information, please contact LexSage Professional Corporation at 416-307-4168 or at cyndee@lexsage.com.