CARM:  Advancing Import Processing to Canada

Canadian customs (CBSA) is releasing a new system to assist with the processing of imports via the CPBSA Assessment and Revenue Management or CARM. The project is being phased in over 2021 and 2022 to streamline the processing of importing commercial goods to Canada.

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CARM is CBSA's online self service platform to serve Canadian importers, brokers and parters.

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CBSA will be continuing to deliver monthly Webinars for CARM Client Portal Onboarding and What You Need to Know with CARM Release 2.


Release 1: Introduction of CARM client Portal basic functions.

CARM is open for all importers, customs brokers and trade consultants. Many experts are advising importers to familiarize them CARM but to wait to register to allow the complexities of the system to be clarified.

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Key functions of the CARM Client Portal include:

  • Pre-authorized debit, credit card , and other payment options
  • Statement of Account and transaction history
  • Ability to assign and restrict access to trade partners and customers. Note: In release 1, importers an only designate brokers and trade consultants. (see section below regarding BAM).
  • Ability to request rulings on the CARM Client Portal.

Importers can access the portal via their GCKey or Sign-on Partner.

A great CARM tool available for Importers is the assistance of assigning HS classification, calculating duty and taxes. CARM also has a chatbot to assist with the onboarding process.

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Assigning your BAM: Business Account Manager

The first step in registering for CARS is to designate a Business Account Manager or BAM. Your BAM has global access on your behalf and is responsible for assigning access and overall management of the account. All users are required to create their individual portal user accounts using GCKey or Sign-on Partner.


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CARM: Release 2

The CBSA CARM team announced that they intend to implement CARM Release 2 not prior to January 2023  (release 2 was originally planned to implement in May 2022)

CARM Release 2 will eliminate the current B3/B2 process and replace the current customs forms with a version controlled electronic commercial accounting declaration (CAD). It will also implement changes to the Release Prior to Payment program, requiring all importers to obtain account security. Along with other significant shifts in billing periods and offsetting, Release 2 will fundamentally change how the importing community will transact with the CBSA.

Release scheduled in 2023

  • Expanded functionalities of theCPP
  • Business registration and program enrolment
  • Ability for electronic commercial accounting declarations, corrections and adjustments (replacing current B3 Customs Coding and B2 Request for Adjustment forms)
  • Changes to Release Prior to Payment requirements for surety bonds
  • Harmonized billing cycles
  • New offsetting options
  • Electronic management for appeals and compliance actions

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Learn More at upcoming seminars:

Webinar Registration – CARM Client Portal Onboarding

The CBSA’s Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) team is continuing monthly webinars. Check their website for details.


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