Thursday, June 20, 2024
Windsor-Detroit Ambassador Bridge Photo: Detroit Historical Society

CARM compared to ArriveCan

A rushed system deployed to solve a non-existent problem

In a May 22 news release, the  Government of Canada announced that it has amended the Order that brings into force the final legislative changes for the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) digital initiative. These legislative amendments, and associated regulations, will now come into force on October 21, 2024. On this day, CARM will be become the official system for the collection of duties and taxes for goods imported into Canada.

CARM launched internally at the CBSA on May 13.

The CBSA has also now assumed the responsibility for the administration of import-export program accounts, a role previously held by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

To ease the transition to CARM, all commercial businesses who import goods into Canada are encouraged to register on the CARM Client Portal as soon as possible, ahead of the new coming into force date this fall.

Blacklock’s Reporter notes that “Shippers and Customs officers alike have depicted the launch of CARM as a computer-made disaster that has already gone 42 percent over budget. The project originally budgeted at $370 million has cost $526 million to date, by official estimate.

“The Customs and Immigration Union in an April 27 submission to the Commons trade committee warned of difficulties. ‘We have general concerns regarding the decision to implement it in the first place,’ it said. ‘It seems to follow the same pattern established by previous projects, notably ArriveCan, where a rushed system is deployed as a solution to a non-existent problem.’”

Earlier this spring, the Canadian Association of Importers and Exporters noted that “Only 3 of 33 Trade Chain Partner (TCP) participants have software that is fully certified to interact with the CARM system…Calculations of duties and taxes continue to be incorrect.”