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On February 4, 2021, Transport Canada repealed the previous definition of a power-assisted bicycle.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.

How SIMA Changes Regulations on Upholstered Goods from Asia

June 1, 2021 – Toronto, ON – Canada recently invoked the Special Import Measures Act, or SIMA, to curb imports on products that are viewed as being “dumped” by companies in Asia. This will have a significant impact on the importation of upholstered goods in the foreseeable future.

The customs experts at ARGO Customs wants Canadian importers to be aware of how this will impact furniture imports.

On December 21, 2020, the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) responded to allegations that both China and Vietnam were “dumping” upholstered furniture. In this situation, “dumping” refers to selling exported goods in a foreign country for less money than those goods would cost in the country of origin. This form of dumping is seen as hostile and damaging to the importing market, by undercutting local producers.

As of May 5, 2021, the CBSA has released preliminary findings upholding the charges. Due to this, they have instituted significantly higher duties on a wide range of upholstered furniture items from China and Vietnam.  These items include virtually all upholstered seats – including seats that rock or swivel, using any form of upholstering, and seating any number of people.  There are a handful of exceptions:

Stationary seating upholstered with fabric, rather than leather

Seats without arms manufactured for dining room end-use.

Upholstered bar stools or other stools elevated higher than 24″

Seating specifically for outdoor use such as patio chairs

Bean bag seats

Folding or stackable chairs

Otherwise, all other upholstered seats are subject to the new duties.

As of May 5, the new duties are as follows:

Upholstered furniture from China is subject to a provisional 206.36% anti-dumping duty, as well as an 89.54% countervailing duty, for a total of 295.9% additional duties.

Upholstered furniture from Vietnam is subject to a provisional 89.77% anti-dumping duty, as well as an 11.73% countervailing duty, for a total of 101.5% additional duties.

Companies involved in the importation of furniture from Asia would be advised to see help from an established customs broker, to help them navigate these new rules.

About ARGO Customs

ARGO Customs are experts in Canadian imports and exports. Their dedicated trade specialists can help companies avoid unnecessary fees and bureaucratic problems while speeding up the delivery of goods.

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

Canada Border Services Agency Announces New Revenue Management System

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) recently announced that it would be implementing a new system that would “transform how the CBSA assesses, collects, manages, and reports on import revenue and trade information.”

As today’s leading importing/exporting firm in Canada, the team from Argo Customs will be participating in the rolling out of both projects, referred to as the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management Project or CARM. The first release will take place in May 2021 and the second in May 2022.

CARM Will Transform the Importation Process

According to officials, CARM is a multi-year initiative designed to revolutionize the importation process. As one of the top collectors of revenue for the Canadian government, the CBSA is second only to the Canada Revenue Agency.

“The billions of dollars we collect annually in duties and taxes are critical to our economy,” a CARM representative recently stated.

To make it easier to import and export goods into and out of Canada, CARM will offer users an online portal that will give importers/exporters access to border services 24/7, every day of the week.

Some of the most attractive features to the new online portal will include:

  • Online tools to classify goods, submit e-declarations and calculate taxes and duties
  • View up-to-date account information
  • Make e-payments and become paperless
  • Allow importers and customs brokers to tailor the services needed to manage their own accounts
  • Streamline the process of working with the CBSA
  • Enhance consistency and adherence to trade rules and decisions
  • Minimize repetitive information requirements
  • & More!

Contact Argo Customs today to learn more about the CARM system!

For those importing and exporting goods into and out of Canada, contact Argo Customs today online for more information about the benefits CARM will provide and how we’re participating. You can also call 1 (888) 311-8303.

Updated Safety Notice on Pourable Alcohol-Based Fuels and Portable Firepots

According to the Consumer and Hazardous Products Safety Directorate due to several incidents resulting in fatalities and serious injuries from fire jets erupting from pourable alcohol-based fuels and portable containers, safety guidelines have been updated to restrict the transportation of these fuels without proper safety equipment.

According to the ASTM-F3429 and F349M-20 publications containers that lack adequate flame mitigation safety equipment that meets the technical specifications laid out in the notices pose a danger to human life.

The Transport & Safety Details

All products that are deemed dangerous to human life or safety are prohibited from transport, advertisement, manufacture, and sale in Canada. Products that are deemed dangerous if it is foreseeable that in their normal operation, they could cause serious injury or death. According to the Directorate’s investigation, these portable containers were responsible for the fire jets because they lacked fire suppression and safety measures.

Essentially, according to the updated Notices, all containers that transport alcohol-based fuels must meet the safety guidelines outlined in the notices or they are per se illegal and could subject the owner and/or operator to fines or other punishments. The scope of the notices affects two types of products: (1) portable firepots and containers holding pourable alcohol-based fuels.

Portable firepots are devices that use pourable fuels and are not fixed (i.e., they can be moved around). These are devices that are “plug and play” – they don’t need specialized tools or need to be installed. Portable firepots include a broad range of consumer items such as:

  • Fire burners,
  • Patio burners,
  • Firelights,
  • Flame pots,
  • Portable fireplaces,
  • Firebowls, and
  • Fire pits.

Notice that all of these products are free-standing and are not attached to or embedded in anything. Therefore, portable firepots would exclude installed fireplaces, fire pits, grills, and other devices that are attached or fixed to a space.

Containers of pourable alcohol-based fuels, while by themselves are not dangerous, when used to transport in conjunction with a firepot can result in danger to human life. The scope of the order includes portable fuels such as chafing fuels, camping stoves, lighter fluid, and fire starters. The authorities are primarily concerned with containers that have a bottled neck and are not refillable. The order specifically excludes alcohol-based cleaning solutions, de-icing products, combustion engine fuels, jerry cans, and alcohol-based fuels that are in single-use pastes or canisters.

ARGO Customs

Contact our team at ARGO Customs for customs and import and export updates, and solutions.

 

Why Was I Stopped at The Border When Returning to Canada?

At Argo Customs, our job is to help you move goods through the Canadian border with a minimum of hassle.  We make sure your shipments arrive safely, even during times of crisis like the continuing COVID-19 outbreak.

However, just about anyone crossing the border might be stopped by the Canadian border police – not just people transporting goods.  So, in this article, we wanted to briefly talk about some of the various reasons anyone might have to stop for an inspection, and what that inspection entails.

Common Reasons People Returning to Canada Might Be Stopped at The Border

  1. Random inspection

Some stops are truly random, and there’s nothing you could have done to prevent them.  The border patrol will periodically stop a vehicle just to make sure everything is in order.

  1. Looking for goods in the vehicle

If you declare any goods when crossing the border, there’s always a chance you’ll be stopped to verify your declaration was accurate.  This would involve showing the goods declared, and possibly undergoing a vehicle search.

  1. Reporting large amounts of money

If you’re declaring more than CA$10,000 in cash or equivalent monetary instruments (like bonds or cashier’s cheques) you can probably expect to be stopped for a discussion of why.

  1. Verification of paperwork

Even if you’re a legal citizen of Canada, you may still be asked to stop so that your paperwork can be examined more closely, before you’re allowed to enter.

  1. Paying duties or taxes

If you are carrying taxable goods into the country, you’ll be asked to pay.  Be prepared with a means of payment if you know this is likely to happen.

What happens if you’re stopped for an inspection or questioning?

If you are stopped for questioning, the best thing to do is remain calm, and politely answer the questions as briefly and truthfully as you can.  Some things which may be discussed include:

  • Your activities while outside the country
  • Proof of guardianship of any children traveling with you
  • Verifying payment of any taxes or duties
  • Inspection of pets or other animals for signs of infection
  • Proofs for purchases made outside the country, particularly high-value purchases.  (Keep your receipts!)
  • Counting/verifying declared money being brought into the country
  • Running background or criminal checks

For most people, these processes will only be a brief inconvenience.  However, if you’re moving goods into Canada, it’s much better to work with a broker to avoid these hassles!  Contact Argo Customs to learn more.