PRESS RELEASE: New Government ACE System Not Ready for Feb 28 Deadline

– FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Manufacturing Moment from Manufacturing Talk Radio
Contact: Lew Weiss – PH: 973-808-8300

New Government ACE System Not Ready for Feb 28 Deadline
Imports and Exports Held for Non-Compliance at Ports Around the Globe Could Create Chaos

New York, New York; January 27, 2016 – Manufacturing Talk Radio has recently uncovered that ACE, the Automated Commercial Environment of the International Trade Data System being implemented by the Department of Homeland Security is $1 billion over budget and badly behind schedule for a February 28, 2016 cargo implementation deadline creating the potential for many imports to get locked up by U.S. Customs and Border Protection at ports across the country creating chaos is the economic supply chain, if goods can even leave ports around the world. The commercial trade system, designed to automate import and export paperwork processing, to replace outdated cargo processing systems, enhance border security, and bolster our Nation’s security, involves 47 Partner Government Agencies (PGA) and thousands of freight forwarder and customs broker service providers, using a “single window” paperless concept intended to create a more efficient and streamlined filing system for U.S. import and export documentation. System glitches that delayed a November 1, 2015 start, brings the February deadline into question, and may jeopardize the December 2016 full implementation deadline. More importantly, it could create a log jam at U.S. ports where import and export containers are frozen while the conversion from paper to digital documentation is sorted out.

Once ACE is up and running, all entry summaries will be mandatory through the new “single window” system, and the outdated Automated Commercial System (ACS) will be decommissioned. The outdated ACS has been holding importers/exporters back and a more efficient and streamlined system is necessary to keep up with the fast paced global market of the 21st century. To prepare for the roll-out of ACE, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) worked with the 47 Partner Government Agencies (PGA) to ensure participation between the Partnering Government Agencies. The release will partially depend on the PGA’s participation in order to ensure all systems are working properly and all parties are on the same page. However, PGA’s have rejected electronic filing systems in the past so President Obama forced the issue through Executive Order 13659 issued on February 19, 2014.

On Tuesday, January 26, Manufacturing Talk Radio interviewed Celeste Catano, Senior Global Strategist at Kewill, a provider of multimodal transportation supply chain execution software, and Amy Magnus, Director of Customs Affairs & Compliance at Deringer, a service provider for streamlining logistics. Both individuals are on the committee on U.S. Customs and Border Protection advising the government on the crafting and implementation of ACE, and were equally concerned that the system is not ready for release, although the February 28, 2016 deadline has not budged. Manufacturing Talk Radio will update this story in late February and try to determine if ACE will be implemented with the same fleeting glory as the Affordable Care Act portal All prior shows are stored for listeners at including this episode S5-E18.

SINGLE WINDOW ISSUE PAPER OVERVIEW: • Executive Order (EO) 13659 requires the implementation of the International Trade Data System (ITDS) Single Window by the end of December 2016. • ITDS is being implemented through the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE), the advanced trade processing system being built by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) via its component agency, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). • The Border Interagency Executive Council (BIEC), has been established to develop policies and processes to enhance coordination across U.S. Government agencies to improve supply chain processes and improve identification of illicit shipments. • To support implementation of the EO, DHS has established three deadlines by which the trade community must file transactions in ACE: o May 1, 2015: Mandatory use of ACE for all electronic manifest filing. o November 1, 2015: Mandatory use of ACE for all electronic cargo release and related entry summary filings o October 1, 2016: Mandatory use of ACE for all remaining electronic portions of the CBP cargo process.
BACKGROUND • Executive Order (EO) 13659: Streamlining the Export/Import Process for America’s Businesses established a December 2016 deadline for completion of the International Trade Data System (ITDS), the United States’ version of a national “Single Window.” The new capabilities to be delivered through this effort will simplify and speed-up cross-border commerce while reducing the costs of importing and exporting goods. In addition, the EO challenged the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and other agencies to find ways to better orchestrate operational processes at the border, streamline data needs, and take other concrete steps to achieve measurable improvements in trade facilitation and enforcement. Some specific examples of these improvements that the Border Interagency Executive Council (BIEC) is working to implement are new unified messaging capabilities from the government to filers regarding the status of a shipment, enhanced coordination of risk management activities across agencies to speed review and decision-making processes, and improved alignment with global best practices and standards to enable future inter-operability with other national Single Window systems.


For more insight, see below:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) plans to complete and deploy the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE), the new paperless system for filing import and export manifest data.

CBS is working closely with Kewill to develop the new ACE software.

ACE will offer a modernized and streamlined way to process manifest data, cargo release, post release, export information.  With hopes of completing the program by the end of 2016, ACE will be the mandatory processing procedure for all customs export and import trade data.

The release will partially depend on the PGA’s participation in order to ensure all systems are working properly and all parties are on the same page. PGA have rejected electronic filing systems in the past, so total cooperation is a necessity to ensure ACE can be as efficient as possible.

ACE will use a secure data portal to allow exporters and importers to use a single window for all trade processing data entry for every port across all industries. Importers and exporters are in a transitional period, where the Automated Commercial System (ACS) that is in place now, will be phased out.

On February 28th, filers will only be allowed to file in ACE and no longer be able to use ACS for all electronic entries and associated entry summaries*. Electronic data for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) must be filed in ACE.

*The February 28, 2016 transition to ACE covers the following electronic entry/entry summary types:

  • 01 – Consumption
  • 02 – Consumption ‑ Quota/Visa
  • 03 – Consumption – Antidumping/Countervailing Duty
  • 06 – Consumption ‑ Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ)
  • 07 – Consumption ‑ Antidumping/Countervailing Duty and Quota/Visa Combination
  • 11 – Informal
  • 12 – Informal ‑ Quota/Visa (other than textiles)
  • 21 – Warehouse
  • 22 – Re‑Warehouse
  • 23 – Temporary Importation Bond (TIB)
  • 31 – Warehouse Withdrawal Consumption
  • 32 – Warehouse Withdrawal ‑ Quota
  • 34 – Warehouse Withdrawal Antidumping/Countervailing Duty
  • 38 – Warehouse Withdrawal ‑ Antidumping/Countervailing Duty & Quota/Visa Combination
  • 51 – Defense Contract Administration Service Region (DCASR)
  • 52 – Government ‑ Dutiable

The CBP released the benefits that customs brokers and other entities handling exporting and importing data filing will see from this new streamlined paperless system. Electronic manifests will allow the government to quickly determine if incoming cargo poses a risk, or can proceed into the country. Additionally, we will see reduced wait time for processing at Ports of Entry and receive enhanced visibility of cargo status through new status messages.

For a complete overview and timeline of the ACE program check: