E-manifest debuts at the border

Starting in January, Mexican exporters are now using electronic manifests to move merchandise overland into the U.S. E-manifest is part of the North American Alliance for Security and Prosperity signed last June by Customs authorities from both nations.

Under the program, prior to reaching the border, exporters electronically inform Customs of the amount of SKUs being exported, the identity of the exporter, as well as with data on the vehicle, its owners and the driver at the wheel. This advance notice permits inspectors to evaluate the cargo before it arrives and to determine the type of inspection the cargo require, if any.

The first use of an e-manifest came in a pilot program last December at the Nogales, Ariz., port of entry. It proved successful enough to implement at other border crossings.

Initially the program focuses mainly on in-bond maquiladora cargo, but other companies will be able to join this extension of the already-implemented fast track system.

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