Temporary Ban on Importation of Handguns Into Canada Now in Effect

Argo Customs Brokers is dedicated to maintaining clear communication with their customers and those who wish to keep themselves informed about important importing and exporting regulations. As such, we present pertinent points from a news release issued by Global Affairs Canada.

The news release titled Temporary Ban on Importation of Handguns Into Canada Now in Effect was published on August 19, 2022 by Global Affairs Canada.

A temporary ban on restricted handgun imports has been announced by the Hon. Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Hon. Marco Mendicino, Minister of Public Safety. Individuals and businesses will no longer be able to apply for permits for import-restricted handguns into Canada, with narrow exceptions. These measures will be in force until the proposed in Bill C-21 goes into effect.

Less than three months after Canadian Minister of Public Safety, Mark Mendicino, announced new gun control laws, the government has temporarily banned the import of handguns into the country. The bill represents a shift by the federal gov­ernment to rely on regulation rather than legislation.

“My top priority as minister of public safety is keeping Canadians safe. This temporary ban is further proof that we are using all the tools at our disposal to fight gun crime. It is a key pillar of our plan to address it, along with investments in prevention, action at our borders, a ban on assault-style weapons and Bill C‑21: Canada’s most significant action on gun violence in a generation.” –Marco Mendicino, Minister of Public Safety

Bill C-21 is one of the most stringent gun control laws passed by Parliament in decades. The bill would also include stricter penalties for people who smuggle guns into the country and for people who traffic them. Meanwhile, the number of firearms seized at border crossings more than doubled in 2021, compared to 2020.

Key Takeaways

  • Canada’s Firearms Act and Part III of the Criminal Code regulate firearms.
  • Canada regulates a variety of imports on the Export and Import Permits Act Import Control List.
  • The 2021 budget provided $312 million to expand weapons tracing and strengthen border control to prevent gun smuggling and trafficking.
  • The Canadian government has already introduced Firearms Act revisions that will take effect in the Fall of 2022.
  • The Canadian government launched Bill C-21 in May 2022 to reduce gun violence.

Associated Links

Export and Import Controls – Firearms: Requirements for exporting prohibited firearms

Import Control List and the Export and Import Permits Act.

Canadian Firearms Program – Overview: ARCHIVED – RPP 2006-2007 – Royal Canadian Mounted Police 5 / 6 (canada.ca)

Bill C-21: An Act to amend certain Acts and to make certain consequential amendments (firearms)

Argo Customs Brokers is Available to Assist

If you are an individual or represent a company that imports handguns or wishes to do so, make sure to read the above notification from Global Affairs Canada and the associated links regarding regulations thoroughly. The team at Argo Customs Brokers is always available to answer questions about importing and exporting and can help you to understand the effect that this new temporary ban can have on your plans. All inquiries are welcome.

CBSA Reminds Canadians of Cannabis Border Laws

CBSA Reminds Canadians of Cannabis Border Laws

Argo Customs Brokers is dedicated to maintaining clear communication with their customers and those who wish to keep themselves informed about important importing and exporting regulations. As such, we present pertinent points from a news release issued by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

The news release titled CBSA reminds Canadians of cannabis border laws, was published on May 9, 2022 by the Canada Border Services Agency.

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is reminding Canadians that even though cannabis is legal and regulated in their country, it is still against the law to bring cannabis or products made from cannabis into or out of Canada, even if it is a gift or for personal use. Make sure you buy cannabis online from a registered Canadian store. If you don’t, you could face delays, an enforcement action, or even criminal charges.

All goods that come into Canada must be reported to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). Depending on how they come in (by mail, air, sea, land, or rail), they may be subject to a more thorough inspection. The Canada Border Services Agency enforces more than 100 acts of Parliament at the border where they apply (CBSA). Officers of the CBSA are allowed to check cargo coming into as well as leaving the country.

The Customs Act applies to all types of shipments, including those that are commercial, personal, sent by mail or courier, and commercial. All of these types of shipments can be searched for illegal goods, including cannabis and cannabis products.

According to the Cannabis Act, it is still against the law to bring cannabis or cannabis products into or out of Canada without a valid permit or exemption from the Canadian government. This includes CBD products made from either hemp or cannabis.

The CBSA advises, “Avoid seizures, fines or arrest. Don’t bring it into Canada. Don’t take it out of Canada.”

When entering Canada, people who try to hide the fact that they have cannabis in their possession risk having it seized, being arrested, or having to pay a fine. The level of the punishment will depend on the severity of the infraction, what kind of rule it was, and how many times it was broken.

The mission of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is to provide integrated border services that strike a balance between the need to support national security and public safety priorities and the need to make it easy for legitimate travelers and goods to cross the border. This year (2022), the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) has taken 16,498 kg of cannabis from 22,779 people. Note that travelers going to or coming back from Canada can help the border crossing go smoothly if they know and follow the rules at the Canadian border.

Key Takeaways

  • Goods entering Canada from any mode of transportation, including air, sea, land, and railway, must be reported to the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) and may be subject to an additional examination.
  • The CBSA enacts hundreds of laws for the benefit of Canadians.
  • You must declare any personal, mail, couriered, or commercial shipments at Customs. They may examine them for banned items, such as cannabis and cannabis products.
  • It remains illegal under the Cannabis Act for Canadians to bring cannabis or cannabis products into Canada, or to export them out of Canada, unless they’re permitted to do so.
  • If you don’t declare your cannabis when entering Canada, you could be subject to fines, arrests, and/or seizures.

Associated Links

Cannabis Act: Cannabis Act (S.C. 2018, c.16)

Customs Act: Customs Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. 1 (2nd Supp.)

Travellers: Cannabis at the border

Penalties for cannabis-related offences

Cannabis in the provinces and territories

Argo Customs Brokers is Available for Consultation

If you are an individual who needs information about how these acts affect you, make sure to read the above notifications from the Canada Border Services Agency and the associated links regarding the regulations thoroughly. The team at Argo Customs Brokers is always available to answer questions about importing and exporting and can help you to understand the effect that this information may have on your plans. All inquiries are welcome.


Food Product Innovation Amendments to the FDR and SFCR

ARGO Customs brokers has years of experience with knowing how to bring food into Canada.

When it comes to food products, an importer has to comply not only with Canada Customs (CBSA) rules, but with Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) rules as well.

For all food products, an SFC licence is needed. In addition, for fresh produce, a DRC licence (or DRC exemption letter) is required.

To make it easy for importers to understand what to do for their particular goods, they are welcome to contact us directly via email at info@argocustoms.com or feel free to use the LIVE chat tool on our website at https://argocustoms.com/.

Our certified Customs specialist will provide you with useful links and step-by-step instructions.

The changes to the FDR and SFCR include:

  • – Repeal of some standard container sizes.
  • – Incorporation by reference of remaining standard container sizes.
  • – Incorporation by reference of class names.
  • – Updated definition of test market food.
  • – Harmonized and streamlined food commodity-specific labelling requirements.

CFIA updates their rules and requirements on a regular basis.  Our role is to educate our customers on what they need to do in order to ensure that Customs clearances go smoothly.

On July 6, 2022, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency published amendments to the Food and Drug Regulations (FDR) and the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) related to the Food Product Innovation initiative.
Guidance in the Industry Labelling Tool is updated and a summary of changes page is available.

The Food Product Innovation initiative contributes to the Government of Canada’s continued effort to modernize food labelling as part of an overall coordinated approach to the federal food regulatory framework.

ARGO Customs Brokers continually monitors all new CBSA and CFIA requirements so that our customers’ shipments can be released without delay.

Rules and Regulations for Importing Computers and Electronics from China to Canada

China is one of the biggest suppliers of computers and electronics worldwide. Even though all the instructions for importing computers and electronics from China to Canada can be found online, considering that you are located halfway across the world, it can be challenging to do so for a number of reasons. To facilitate your search, here is a step-by-step guide:

1- Preparing for Import

Before importing computers and electronics from China to Canada as a business, you will need to obtain a Business Number (BN) to open an import RM account. The BN is issued by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). Click here to get a BN or contact the CRA Business Window at 1-800-959-5525. When you are importing it as an individual, and not as a business, there is no need to have a BN and ARGO Customs Brokers will assist you.

Now that you have the BN RM import number, we can assist you to determine the HS Tariff classification codes and inform you about Other Government Departments (OGD) regulations.

Most electronics items are duty free, but you have to pay Customs TAX (GST for businesses) and HST for individuals. For commercial/business importations, GST is 5% of the dollar value of the goods for all provinces. For personal importation, HST is related to the province (for example for Ontario, it is 13%).

We need a copy of the commercial invoice from your vendor in China with full description and brand name. Last but not least, ensure that the electronic gadgets you are importing are permitted in Canada. Please consult the Memoranda Series D9, Prohibited Importation and Government Departments and Agencies Reference List for Importers.

2- Classifying the Goods

Once you are sure about the type of products you are importing, we will determine a correct tariff classification number (HS code), as it is used to determine the payments (duty, when applicable and TAX) at the time of import. China uses the Harmonised System (HS) to classify the products. The HS number is a 10-digit code that is used to identify the product. The first six digits are universal, whereas the last four are unique to Canada. When you have the first six digits, ARGO Customs Brokers can assist you to find the last four.

3- Determining Taxes and Duties

On our website we present a very useful tool for you to check the HS Tariff codes, find them as per CBSA Tariffs, and check the duty and TAX on your own.

Visit http://customscalculator.com/CUSTOMSCAWeb/CUSTOMSCAWeb.aspx to access the tool.

Our customs brokerage fees can also be seen and estimated using the calculator’s link.

Visit https://argocustoms.com/fees-calculator/ to access the Canadian Tax and Duty Calculator.

4- Shipping and Reporting of Computers and Electronics

ARGO Customs Brokers conduct clearances at ALL Canadian ports and via any mode of transportation. So, whichever port your electronics arrive at, we’ll assist with the Customs clearances.

On the other hand, in case you are handling the goods yourself, consult with the Hand-Carried Goods Release Process (HCG).

5- Getting Computers and Electronics Released

As fully licensed customs brokers, we submit entries electronically via the SWI IID system. It is a fast and efficient way to make a declaration.

When you are doing the clearance by yourself (on paper), you’ll need:
● two copies of Form CI1, Canada Customs Invoice
● two copies of Form A8A-B, Cargo Control Document
● a copy of all importation documents, licences, certificates, and permits (where required)

On the flip side, if you want the import items like laptops, desktops, cameras, computers, and other electronics to be released before paying the taxes, you will have to fill out an application. You will be required to submit an approved amount as a security deposit to the CBSA.

Note: The CARM Client Portal, is a self-service tool that will facilitate accounting and revenue management processes with the CBSA, will be available to importers, brokers, and trade consultants in the near future. When it is fully implemented, the release process for individuals and businesses who wish to self-declare will be made easier.

After you have succeeded in importing computers and electronics from China to Canada, it is your job to ensure that any accounting errors are cleared and that you keep copies of the import documents safe for the next six years. If any errors were made, you will have an option to submit a B2 correction form.

The Verdict

There are some certain rules and regulations that you must follow when importing computers and electronics from China to Canada. If the above-mentioned process is not found to be easy for a new importer or individual, you can minimise the work by hiring ARGO Customs Brokers. For more information or questions, reach out to ARGO Customs Brokers. All inquiries are welcome.

Feel free to email info@argocustoms.com, or contact us via our messaging option at https://argocustoms.com/import-broker/.

Importing e-bikes (power assisted bicycles)

On February 4, 2021, Transport Canada repealed the previous definition of a power-assisted bicycle. Instead, Transport Canada will assess the design and speed of the e-bicycles in order to determine if it is regulated under the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations.

Transport Canada will regulate your e-bike if it:

● E-bicycles with off-road characteristics designed to operate at speeds greater than 32 km/h (power assisted).
● Is equipped with features that resemble on-road motorcycles or vehicles.
● For E-bikes equipped with speed limiters, Transport Canada will first assess the e-bike based upon the untethered speed capacity to determine if the e-bike is regulated.

E-Bikes are also regulated at Provincial and Territory levels, so it is good practice to check with your local government for regulations prior to importing or purchasing an e-bike.

Importing e-bikes

Please note that electric scooters (no pedals) follow the same guidelines. It’s important to know that not all e-bikes are admissible into Canada, so for further clarification, please visit the Government of Canada’s FAQ page or the Motor Vehicle Act Motor Assisted Cycle Regulation for full details.

Thank you for trusting ARGO Customs Brokers. We appreciate your business and continued loyalty.

If you have more questions or need consultation about importing E-bikes from China or any other countries to Canada, please contact us and one of our customs brokers provide you with more information on E-bikes regulations.

Bringing Animals to Canada: Importing and Travelling with Pets

If you are travelling with a pet or planning to import an animal to Canada, you will need the correct paperwork at the border to meet Canada’s importation requirements.

Depending on the country of export and the type and age of the pet, requirements can vary.

Bringing animals to Canada: Importing and travelling with pets

The best way to understand the requirements is to go to the CFIA website and answer the questions online. In return, you will be provided with a list of required paperwork as well as information about legal and transportation policies. This list can be printed to have on hand at the port of entry, along with all of the pet’s usual documents.

When you travel with your pet, you must present all documents at the border in person.

Note that, when using Air Animal services, please follow their requirements regarding cage sizes and acceptable weights.

Typically, when using Air Cargo services, you will be asked to provide the name of the Customs Broker to include on the Air WayBill (AWB).

Actually, you can do the clearance by yourself and won’t need a broker, which will save some money.
Airlines, however, prefer to work with Customs Brokers to make sure that animals will neither be delayed at the border nor have any other problems.

Live animal brokers cannot declare electronically via the EDI system, so when you hire a broker, it means that they have to present at the Customs office in person.

Flights can arrive at any time of day or night, so sometimes you may need a broker’s assistance after hours to release animals immediately and this service can be costly.

ARGO Customs Brokers offers money-saving tips as well as consultation regarding how to complete the necessary steps by yourself.

Over the last two years, we consulted with many individuals who wanted to import their pets. These pets played crucial roles regarding stress reduction for their owners during the pandemic.

We are proud that our detailed and professional information helped many to do everything by themselves which resulted in successful pet importation.

Satisfied owners have even sent us pictures of their sweet, happy cats and dogs that safely arrived at new homes.

Best Customs Brokers in Vancouver

If you’ve been on the hunt for a professional and reliable customs broker Vancouver, then you must surely be stressed out by the process. This task can be challenging, especially when you’re on a budget and want someone who can offer expedited services. Most businesses require time sensitive and urgent execution of projects and tasks and the quality of service and dedication to customers are important aspects of your choice.

If this is the situation you have found yourself in with your business, then you need not worry. There are some top customs brokers in Vancouver that can help you out. One such firm that stands out is Argo Customs Vancouver. We have been in the industry for years now, so you can expect us to know our way around the market effectively. We are dedicated to helping businesses reap returns and have their business processes and operations aligned perfectly with new avenues of growth.

Do you want to know what sets Argo Customs Brokers apart from the rest of the customs brokers in Vancouver? Read ahead to find out more.

Customs brokers in Vancouver

Our experience speaks for itself

With years of experience in the industry, we can proudly state that we have our fair share of experience when it comes to providing exceptional services. With access to the right online tools, data, and methods of streamlining tasks and processes, the quick and efficient execution of tasks is a given. Some of our clients have been with us for years now as we never fail to exceed their expectations.

Professional and affordable customs brokers services in Vancouver

Our import and export services are known to be affordable and professional. Vancouver’s market has competitive rates and we ensure that you are able to get the desired outcome at the best possible prices. And, we don’t cut any corners while we work! Precision, accuracy, and a friendly and welcoming attitude lies at the core of our services. Try us out and see for yourself, you will not regret it.

We are the best customs brokers in Vancouver

At Argo Customs, we are the best customs brokers in Vancouver. Our experts are certified, have extensive expertise and knowledge, and can build lasting relationships. Their friendly attitude is sure to make you feel content and at ease.

Book your appointment with us today!


With Argo Customs at your service, you can take a sigh of relief. All you have to do is call us at Argo Customs. We will then schedule an appointment per your convenience and get started on the process as soon as possible. We are sure to help you mitigate any delays and mishaps going forward. Your investment and trust in our services as Vancouver customs brokers are going to provide value for money and high customer satisfaction, that’s for sure.

For more information, call Toll-free: 1 (888) 311-8303 or contact ARGO customs broker in Vancouver at (250) 980-3727 or email at info@argocustoms.com. You can even drop us specific queries via email, or chat with us online via the website, argocustoms.com. All inquiries are welcome.

Five Improvements in The July EICS Update | ARGO Customs

What To Look Forward to In the First EICS Update

Earlier this year, the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) officially opened the Export-Import Control System (EICS), an ambitious project aimed at making customs control fully electronic.  Even in its first release, EICS has substantially improved and streamlined the process of having imports and exports approved, and there are ongoing plans to improve the system over the next few years.

The first major upgrade to EICS is due to drop in July, and it’s going to make the system even better.  Let’s take a look at the improvements.

Five Improvements in The July EICS Update

1 – A better look and user interface

The initial release of EICS was fairly bare-bones.  It was functional, but the user interface was not very streamlined.  This new update will substantially improve the interface, as well as bringing it up to Canadian governmental standards for accessibility.  This should make the EICS system even easier to use.

2 – User guides and tutorials

Along with improvements to the user experience, EICS will become easier to use thanks to a range of guides and tutorials showing users how to make use of the system. Every page will have tips on usage, and there will be full-on-demand walkthroughs of common activities.  This will make it far easier for newcomers to get up and running in the system.

3 – Improved authentication system

Another aspect of EICS receiving immediate attention is its authentication system.  This will be improved substantially to, again, bring it in line with legal standards for safety and security.  All users will get unique log-in credentials, and digital security will be tighter as well.

4 – Improved search capabilities

One issue with the first release of EICS is that its search capabilities were limited, and that was a problem when there are thousands of potential product classification codes available.  This new upgrade brings an improved search, with filtering options, so that users will be able to find the appropriate codes more quickly.

5 – Document downloading

Finally, users will have the option to download generated documents as PDF or CSV files and save them locally to their hard drive or to a cloud server.  So, they won’t have to rely on EICS system access for record-keeping.

ARGO Customs specializes in making Canadian imports and exports as simple as possible!  If you need help making the most of this new system, we can reduce your workload while ensuring your goods pass customs as quickly as possible.  Contact us to learn more!

China Under Investigation for Dumping Products in Canada

July 20, 2021 – Toronto, ON – The customs experts at ARGO Customs want shippers to know that another investigation into potentially unethical Chinese trade practices is underway.  In June 2021, the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) announced that they were looking into whether container chassis from China were being illegally “dumped” on the market.

Dumping means selling products overseas for less than those products cost in their country of manufacture.  In some cases, the products may actually be subsidized by the government of that country, to encourage price undercutting.  This is widely seen as disruptive and anti-competitive.  Under the Special Import Measures Act (SIMA), the CBSA has the authority to levy fines and extra duties on products that are found to be in violation of international trade regulations.

The complaint was originally lodged by Max-Atlas Equipment International Inc, a Quebec-based container chassis manufacturer.  The accusations were corroborated by two other chassis manufacturers, Di Mond, and Innovative Trailer Design, both in Ontario.  All three companies allege they have suffered material injury through lost sales and market share, as well as secondary effects such as reduced capacity utilization.

The investigation will be carried out by the CBSA, along with the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT).  The two will conduct their investigations separately, but concurrently.  The CBSA investigation will issue a decision on or before August 9, 2021.  The CITT’s investigation will be concluded by September 8, 2021.  At that time, if China is found to be in violation of international trade laws, fines or duties may be imposed to balance out the unfair pricing.

ARGO Customs will be following this issue closely.  Any shippers involved in the import or export of container chassis are advised to contact expert customs brokers for information on how to proceed.

About Argo Customs

Argo Customs is one of Canada’s leading customs brokers.  Their staff specializes in international trade regulations, along with helping shippers clear Canadian customs with a minimum of delay.  They proudly facilitate trade across the country.

For more information or press inquiries, please contact Argo Customs at 1-888-311-8303 or visit https://argocustoms.com/.

This Is What Importers Need to Know About CARM

Years after its initial announcement, the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) project has gone live. This project, spearheaded by the Canadian Border Services Agency is a massive overhaul of Canadian importation procedures, with a focus on moving towards all-electronic processes.

The implementation of CARM will have significant impacts on Canadian importers and exporters. In this article, we will briefly describe the most important aspects of CARM today, as well as what is expected in the next major phase, next year.

What Does CARM do?

CARM is modernizing and updating how data is entered and processed within the CBSA. The ultimate goal is a fully paperless, entirely electronic process, with all data being given directly to the CBSA. This will bring numerous improvements, including:

  • Simplifying the importation process for importers
  • Creating a standards-based electronic interface with the CBSA
  • Delivering a self-service portal for importers to manage accounts, claims, corrections, and payments
  • Reducing import and export costs
  • Improving compliance with international trade rules
  • Tracking large-scale import/export trends in deeper detail

In short, once fully implemented CARM will be beneficial to everyone involved in Canadian imports and exports.

What’s in CARM Phase 1?

CARM is being implemented in multiple phases, with the first phase going live in May 2021.  There are three key things to know about this first phase:

  1. Importers will need to register within the CARM system and obtain a GC Key so they can access the system.  This will become mandatory as of May 2022.
  2. The online client portal will go live with basic functionality.
  3. Importers and exporters using brokers will need to register those brokers in the system as authorized proxies.

Importers are advised to create an account and register their customs brokers as soon as possible.

What’s in CARM Phase 2?

Phase 2 is currently scheduled to be implemented in May 2022, concurrently with CARM registrations becoming mandatory.  The current plans are for this phase to introduce:

  1. The requirement of importers to post a financial security bond, rather than brokers. The size of this bond will correlate to the size of their operation.
  2. Expansion of the online portal to include corrections, rulings, and adjustments.
  3. Replacing the B2 and B3 customs coding processes with unified Commercial Accounting Declarations (CADs), a single document containing all relevant information.

Contact ARGO Customs for More Information

CARM is bringing big changes to Canadian importing. If you have any questions or need assistance updating your processes, please contact ARGO Customs.