[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 155 (Monday, August 14, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 37890-37892]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-17079]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

U.S. Customs and Border Protection


Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) Export Manifest for Vessel 
Cargo Test: Expansion of Test To Include Additional Participants, 
Modification of Required Data Elements, and Extension of Test

AGENCY: U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland 
Security.

ACTION: General notice.

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SUMMARY: This notice announces that CBP is modifying the U.S. Customs 
and Border Protection's (CBP's) Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) 
Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test, a National Customs Automation 
Program (NCAP) test concerning ACE export manifest capability, by 
making certain of the export manifest data elements optional. CBP is 
also extending the test and will be accepting additional applications 
for participation in this modified test from all parties meeting the 
eligibility requirements.

DATES: The modifications of the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo 
Test set forth in this document are effective August 14, 2017. The 
modified test will run until September 21, 2018. Applications from 
additional participants may be submitted at any time. Current test 
participants do not need to reapply. Comments concerning this notice 
and all aspects of the test may be submitted at any time during the 
test period to the email address below.

ADDRESSES: Applications to participate in the ACE Export Manifest for 
Vessel Cargo Test must be submitted via email to CBP Export Manifest at 
[email protected]. In the subject line of the email, 
please use ``ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test Application''. 
Written comments concerning program, policy, and technical issues may 
also be submitted via email to CBP Export Manifest at 
[email protected]. In the subject line of the email, 
please use ``Comment on ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test''.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert C. Rawls, Outbound Enforcement 
and Policy Branch, Office of Field Operations, U.S. Customs and Border 
Protection, via email at [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test is a voluntary test 
in which participants agree to submit export manifest data to CBP 
electronically, at least 24 hours prior to loading of the cargo onto 
the vessel in preparation for departure from the United States. The ACE 
Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test is authorized under Sec.  
101.9(b) of title 19 of the Code of Federal Regulations (19 CFR 
101.9(b)), which provides for the testing of NCAP programs or 
procedures. See Treasury Decision (T.D.) 95-21.
    CBP announced the procedures and criteria related to participation 
in the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test in a notice published 
in the Federal Register on August 20, 2015 (80 FR 50644). On October 
20, 2015, CBP issued a notice published in the Federal Register (80 FR 
63575) correcting an error in the initial notice that misstated the 
technical capability requirements for submitting data to CBP. This test 
was originally set to run for approximately two years. For further 
details on the background and procedures regarding the test, please 
refer to the August 20, 2015 notice.

Expansion of Test to Additional Participants

    In the August 20, 2015 notice announcing the initial phase of the 
ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test, CBP stated that 
participation in the test was limited to nine stakeholders composed of 
a mix of a certain number of vessel carriers and freight forwarders or 
non-vessel operating common carriers (NVOCCs) who met the eligibility 
requirements. This notice announces that the ACE Export Manifest for 
Vessel Cargo Test is now open to all eligible applicants. CBP will 
endeavor

[[Page 37891]]

to accept all new eligible applicants on a first come first serve 
basis; however, if the number of eligible applicants exceeds CBP's 
administrative capabilities, CBP reserves the right to select eligible 
participants in order to achieve a diverse participant pool.

Eligibility Requirements

    Except for the expansion to additional participants, the 
eligibility requirements for the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo 
Test have not changed since the October 20, 2015 correction notice. For 
clarity and convenience to the public, CBP sets forth below the 
eligibility requirements for participation in the test.
    Participation in the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test is 
limited to those parties able to electronically transmit manifest data 
in the identified acceptable format. Prospective ACE Export Manifest 
for Vessel Cargo Test participants must have the technical capability 
to electronically submit data to CBP and receive response message sets 
via Ocean CAMIR, ANSI X12, or Unified XML,\1\ and must successfully 
complete certification testing with their client representative. Once 
parties have applied to participate, they must complete a test phase to 
determine if the data transmission is in the required readable format. 
Applicants will be notified once they have successfully completed 
testing and are permitted to participate fully in the test. In 
selecting participants, CBP will take into consideration the order in 
which the applications are received.
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    \1\ Unified XML was not yet functional at the time of the 
original Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) Export Manifest for 
Vessel Cargo Test. It is now fully functional and available for use.
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    There are no restrictions with regard to the participant's 
organization size, location, or commodity type for participation in the 
test.

Modification of the Filing Condition of Certain Data Elements

    One of the main purposes of the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel 
Cargo Test is to test the feasibility of requiring certain manifest 
information to be filed electronically in ACE at least 24 hours before 
the cargo is loaded on the vessel. Another purpose is to test the 
functionality regarding the filing of such export manifest data within 
the above specified time. Under the current regulatory requirements, 
the complete manifest is generally not required to be submitted until 
after the departure of the vessel. See 19 CFR 4.75, 4.76 and 4.84. The 
data and the results of the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test 
will aid CBP in determining which parties are the best source of the 
export manifest data and when the data is available to be submitted to 
CBP.
    CBP has been consulting with the Commercial Customs Operations 
Advisory Committee (COAC) to address ongoing issues concerning the 
quality, accessibility, and timeliness of export manifest data received 
during the test. Through this process, the COAC advised CBP that 
certain data elements currently required under the test may not be 
available to the party submitting the export manifest data to CBP 24 
hours prior to loading of the cargo onto the vessel in preparation for 
departure from the United States and urged CBP to make those data 
elements optional.
    After evaluating the initial phase of the ACE Export Manifest for 
Vessel Cargo Test and considering COAC's comments, CBP has determined 
that, in order to better test the functionality and feasibility of 
submitting the specified export data at least 24 hours prior to loading 
of the cargo on the vessel, four of the previously mandatory or 
conditional data elements should be changed to optional. This will 
enable participants to submit the optional information when and if it 
is available. (Data elements which are ``mandatory'' must be provided 
to CBP for every shipment. Data elements which are ``conditional'' must 
be provided to CBP only if the particular information pertains to the 
cargo. Data elements which are ``optional'' may be provided to CBP but 
are not required.)
    CBP is modifying the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel Cargo Test to 
change the following four mandatory or conditional data elements to 
optional:

 Name of the Master (Data Element #4)
 Number of House Bills of Lading (Data Element #9)
 Split Shipment Indicator (Data Element #22)
 Portion of Split Shipments (Data Element #23)

    The remaining data elements under the ACE Export Manifest for 
Vessel Cargo Test continue to be mandatory, conditional, or optional as 
provided in the August 20, 2015 notice. The full list of data elements 
is set forth below. Unless otherwise noted, the data elements are 
mandatory.

(1) Mode of transportation (Vessel, containerized or Vessel, non-
containerized)
(2) Name of ship or vessel
(3) Nationality of ship
(4) Name of Master (optional)
(5) Port of loading
(6) Port of discharge
(7) Bill of Lading number (Master and House)
(8) Bill of Lading type (Master, House, Simple or Sub)
(9) Number of House Bills of Lading (optional)
(10) Marks and Numbers (conditional)
(11) Container Numbers (conditional)
(12) Seal Numbers (conditional)
(13) Number and kind of packages
(14) Description of goods
(15) Gross Weight (lb. or kg.) or Measurements (per HTSUS)
(16) Shipper name and address
(17) Consignee name and address
(18) Notify Party name and address (conditional)
(19) Country of Ultimate Destination
(20) In-bond number (conditional)
(21) Internal Transaction Number (ITN) or AES Exemption Statement (per 
shipment)
(22) Split Shipment Indicator (Yes/No) (optional)
(23) Portion of split shipment (e.g., 1 of 10, 4 of 10, 5 of 10--Final, 
etc.) (optional)
(24) Hazmat Indicator (Yes/No)
(25) UN Number (conditional) (If the hazmat indicator is yes, then UN 
(for United Nations Number) or NA (North American Number) and the 
corresponding 4-digit identification number assigned to the hazardous 
material must be provided.)
(26) Chemical Abstract Service (CAS) Registry Number (conditional)
(27) Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or Product Identification 
Number (conditional) (For shipments of used vehicles, the VIN must be 
reported, or for used vehicles that do not have a VIN, the Product 
Identification Number must be reported.)

    If, after the conclusion of the ACE Export Manifest for Vessel 
Cargo Test, CBP decides to conduct rulemaking to amend the regulations 
concerning the filing of the vessel export cargo manifest, CBP will 
reevaluate the filing conditions for each data element to determine the 
feasibility of requiring that data element to be filed electronically 
in ACE within the specified time before the cargo is loaded on the 
vessel.

Extension of the Test

    To continue further evaluation of the ACE Export Manifest for 
Vessel Cargo Test, CBP is extending the test for an additional year. 
The expanded and modified test will run until September 21, 2018.

Applicability of Initial Test Notice

    Unless explicitly changed by this or subsequent notices published 
in the Federal Register, all other aspects of the initial test 
announced in the August 20,

[[Page 37892]]

2015 notice (and corrected in the October 20, 2015 notice), including 
test procedures and conditions, the application process, and the waiver 
of certain regulatory requirements, remain in effect.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 
104-13, 44 U.S.C. 3507), an agency may not conduct, and a person is not 
required to respond to, a collection of information unless the 
collection of information displays a valid control number assigned by 
the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The collections of 
information in this NCAP test have been approved by OMB in accordance 
with the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act and assigned OMB 
control number 1651-0001.

    Dated: August 8, 2017.
Todd C. Owen,
Executive Assistant Commissioner, Office of Field Operations.
[FR Doc. 2017-17079 Filed 8-11-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 9111-14-P