US Customs digitises cargo entries

04 / 03 / 2014

  • The Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) streamlines electronic transmission

    The Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) streamlines electronic transmission

US CUSTOMS and Border Protection (CBP) has admitted Lambert-St Louis International Airport (STL) into its ACE (Automated Commercial Environment) cargo release pilot scheme, with immediate effect.

The simplified entry scheme allows importers to file a streamlined set of data earlier in the import process, and update their entries right up to the carrier’s arrival, so that information submitted is the best available.

It lets Customs review shipment information much earlier in the supply chain, and data filers can then resolve issues before the aircraft departs for the United States, or during transit, resulting in fewer goods being held on arrival.

ACE not only streamlines electronic transmission for the filer, but it also assists importers in planning and arranging their logistics, says a spokesperson.

The carrier submits the manifest and/or Air Cargo Advance Screening (ACAS) security filing, while the importer submits the Simplified Entry data set.Other airports included in the ACE pilot scheme include Anchorage, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas Ft Worth, Houston, JFK, Los Angeles, Miami and San Francisco.

STL’s cargo development director David Lancaster enthuses: “This will increase efficiency and reduce potential delays in the supply chain.”

The ACE scheme is part of the US government’s drive to simplify customs processes and make them paper-free.

Its phased ITDS (International Trade Data System) initiative is personally backed by President Obama, and due for completion by December 2016.

ITDS will centralise the reporting of imports and exports (currently to multiple agencies), through a single new portal, with the aim of enhancing US economic competitiveness by reducing transportation costs and delays.