On October 11, 2018, Global Affairs Canada published Notice to Importers: Item 82 – Steel Goods (Serial No. 911) which informs importers of the procedures governing the administration of provisional safeguards, in the form of tariff rate quotas (TRQ), for certain steel goods that are listed in item 82 on the Import Control List (ICL). These goods were added to the ICL to implement the Order Imposing a Surtax on the Importation of Certain Steel Goods (Surtax Order). The Surtax Order establishes provisional safeguards in the form of TRQs for steel goods matching the product descriptions specified in the column 2 of the Schedule to the Surtax Order, above which a twenty-five percent surtax will apply.

The Notice applies to steel goods imported from all countries other than those originating in and imported from:

  • the United States;
  • Chile;
  • Mexico, other than energy tubular products and wire rod originating in and imported from Mexico;
  • Israel or another CIFTA beneficiary; and
  • a country benefiting from the General Preferential Tariff, other than concrete reinforcing bar originating in and imported from Vietnam.

The Notice does not apply to imports of steel products that do not meet the product definitions. Goods that are not subject to the Surtax Order may continue to be imported under General Import Permit 80 or General Import Permit 81, as the case may be.

The TRQs will be administered by way of shipment-specific import permits. The application period for shipment-specific import permits will open on October 25, 2018. The TRQs will be administered until the Surtax Order is amended or repealed by the Governor in Council, or ceases to have effect pursuant to section 56 of the Customs Tariff.

The Notice will remain in effect until further notice.

On the same date, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) issued Customs Notice 18-17: Provisional Safeguard Measures Imposed on the Importation of Certain Steel Goods. The notice provides information on the implementation of the Surtax Order, which comes into force October 25, 2018. In addition to the Global Affairs information, CBSA points out that:

  • The 25% safeguard surtax is applied on the value for duty of goods determined in accordance with sections 47 to 55 of the Customs Act.
  • Absent a specific permit, the safeguard surtax will apply to all goods including those released from a Customs Bonded Warehouse or Sufferance Warehouse on or after October 25, 2018 when the Order comes into force.
  • Canada’s Duties Relief Program and Duty Drawback Program continue to be available to importers for duties relief, including safeguard surtaxes, paid or owed by businesses that meet the requirements of these programs.
  • The burden of proof that goods do not originate from an applicable country as defined in the Order lies with the importer.
  • Proof of origin may be in the form of a commercial invoice, a Canada Customs Invoice, a Form A – Certificate of Origin, an Exporter’s Statement of Origin, a Certificate of Origin pursuant to a Free Trade Agreement, or any other acceptable documentation that clearly indicates the country of origin of the goods.
  • To confirm whether imported goods are subject to the safeguard surtax, the CBSA may require importers to provide the following documentation:
    • Specific permit
    • Purchase invoice or order
    • Bill of lading
    • Mill certificate
    • Product literature and technical specifications
    • Any other document to substantiate whether the goods are subject to the safeguard surtax

The CBSA Notice explains how to make corrections to original declarations, requests for re-determinations or further re-determinations, and applications for a refund as well as the process for Customs Self Assessment (CSA) clients. Decisions made by the CBSA may be subject to appeal under the Customs Act.