With the current requirements for electronic reporting by carriers entering Canada and the United States through the Advance Commercial Information (ACI)  and  ACE programs, it will become more readily apparent  to Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) if pickups and deliveries have violated the Rules of Cabotage.

What is Cabotage?

Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) defines cabotage as the practice of point-to-point movement of domestic goods within Canada by foreign-based conveyances and operators.

How does this affect you as a carrier?

Under the ACI and ACE programs, all carriers "For Hire? who engage in cross-border transportation will be required to provide conveyance information on all movements. This will provide CBSA and CBP with electronic data on all equipment entering their respective countries.

How can a carrier stay compliant?

Carriers have the responsibility to:

  1. Understand regulations regarding cabotage,
  2. Know what constitutes a permissible incidental or re-positioning move, and
  3. Ensure that they are in compliance

How to stay informed on cabotage?

To learn more about cabotage, we recommend reading:

  1. For Canadian regulations - Customs Notice 11-014: http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/cn-ad/cn11-014-eng.html
  2. For U.S. regulations - CBP article: http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/trade/cargo_security/carriers/land/how.xml


Additionally, Pacific Customs Brokers  offers many trade compliance seminars for Canadian and U.S. customs compliance issues. See our 2013 Winter-Spring schedule.


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While we strive for accuracy in all our communications, as the Importer of Record it is incumbent upon your company to ensure that you are aware of the requirements under the new regulations so that you maintain compliance as always.