Come April 1, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will increase administrative monetary penalties (AMP). The increase comes at the direction of the Auditor General of Canada in his 2017 Audit of Customs Duties report, which states the AMPs are too low to improve compliance with trade programs.
The increases affect non-compliant importers only. The increases follow a review of the AMP regime that the CBSA undertook from November 2018 to July 2018 that included consultations with industry stakeholders: the Canadian Society of Customs Brokers, the Canadian federation of Independent Business, the Canadian Association of Importers and Exporters, and the Association of International Customs and Border Agencies. Company representatives were also consulted through the border commercial consultative committee.
The CBSA will not be increasing system generated penalties related to the timing for accounting for imported goods. This is because industry stakeholders identified these AMPs as having potentially disproportionate, unintended impacts on small and medium-sized businesses.
To ease the transition to the new penalty structure, CBSA will reset the penalty level to the first level for all existing contraventions importers may have. This is being done to avoid unanticipated impacts on the industry that could occur by issuing second and third level penalties at higher levels than previously indicated. The maximum AMP of $25,000 remains unchanged.
To see penalty rates visit https://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/cn-ad/cn19-05-eng.html.

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