The U.S. Customs Service will hold a series of meetings in Washington, D.C. in January 2003 to hear opinions on implementing advance electronic cargo-reporting rules from interested members of the trade community including importers, exporters, carriers, customs brokers and freight forwarders. Pursuant to security and anti-terrorism objectives, the Trade Act of 2002 requires the Customs Service to develop regulations by next summer for mandatory electronic cargo reporting that will apply to all imports and exports. Customs intends to use its automated manifest system to collect the required cargo data, at least at the outset. This rulemaking will affect all importers and exporters of goods shipped by all modes of transportation: ocean, air, truck and rail.
Customs, which will move from the U.S. Department of the Treasury to the recently enacted U.S. Homeland Security Department, will use the meetings to learn about potential problems posed in making the manifest system work. In particular, as directed by the new law, the Customs Service will solicit information at the meetings on the following topics: the existence of competitive relationships among parties from whom information must be collected; the differences among carriers due to different transportation modes, as well as commercial, operational and technological factors that could affect transmittal of information; the need for interim requirements to reflect the current technology for transmitting, receiving and analyzing electronic information; and the need for transition periods for each mode of transportation.
The meetings, separately scheduled for each mode of transportation, will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in Washington, D.C. on the following dates:
|Air Cargo||January 14, 2003|
|Truck Cargo:||January 16, 2003|
|Rail Cargo:||January 21, 2003|
|Sea Cargo:||January 23, 2003|
Interested parties must provide the Customs Service with notice of intent to attend a particular meeting at least five business days prior to the scheduled date for that meeting.
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