On May 1, 2014, the U.S. Customs and Borders Protection (CBP) published a notice in order to increase trade processing capabilities through an expanded automated commercial environment (ACE) cargo test. This test will allow brokers and importers to qualify for more rapid decisions regarding the release of cargo. ACE is the new import and export information system being developed in order to streamline business processes, facilitate trade growth and reduce costs by allowing users to submit Customs documents electronically.  

Those who would like to qualify must be a self-filing importer or broker who can file ACE entry summaries certified for cargo release. In addition, ACE Cargo Release Data elements, ACE Entry Summary data and three data elements must be submitted, which include the seller name and address, the buyer name and address, as well as the manufacturer/supplier name and address. Once the documents are received, they will be processed and Customs will electronically transmit its decision to the filer. 

This test began on April 6, 2014 and will run through November 1, 2015. At this time, the test is only available to "01" (consumption) and "11" (informal) commercial entries filed in the air, ocean and rail modes of transportation at specified ports. The test may be applied to additional modes of transportation, which will be announced via the Federal Register. CBP invites more parties to join the test over the coming months.