Automated Commercial Environment

The Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) is the system through which the trade community reports imports and exports and the government determines admissibility. CBP trade applies expertise, technology, and automation to create streamlined and efficient processes to facilitate the global exchange of safe and legitimate goods.​​​​

What is Automated Commercial Environment?

The Automated Commercial Environment system (ACE) is a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) technology designed to improve border security while facilitating lawful trade. ACE will enhance data collecting, sharing, and processing for CBP and other federal agencies. The ACE Secure Data Portal is a single, centralized entry point for the trade community to engage with CBP and its Partner Government Agencies (PGA). This “one window” model will eliminate redundancy, significantly cut paper consumption and operating expenses, and enable faster, more efficient import and export procedures.

Key Takeaways

    • ACE is used by CBP and its partner government agencies to collect, track, and process important trade information.

Why use ACE?

The Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) is the principal mechanism or “single window” through which the international commerce community communicates with US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and other collaborating government agencies. ACE will be used by CBP and its partner government agencies to collect, track, and process needed trade information. Other benefits of having the ACE system are:

  • Manifests: Electronic manifests allow the authorities to decide if arriving goods poses a risk or can enter the nation more rapidly. This creates a list of permitted partners who will be able to employ carrier custodial bonds, reduces processing time at ports of entry, and gives you new status messages to provide you with improved visibility of cargo status.
  • Release of Cargo: Working with trade association representatives, CBP has taken initiatives to streamline the entry procedure, resulting in a smaller data set with fewer items to be provided for electronic submissions. This allows data element submission to be streamlined, faster processing for PGA and CBP staff to offer greater security, safety, and compliance. Lastly CBP paper form 3461 is no longer required.
  • Post-release: Filers can also submit post-summary adjustments such reconciliation, drawback, liquidation, and statements. Electronic Census overrides are used to reduce electronic invoice communications. Courier and administrative costs are reduced by eliminating paper. Participants can also pay customs and fees monthly rather than transaction per transaction using ACE Periodic Monthly Statements.
  • Partners in Government (PGAs): ACE is collaborating closely with Partner Government Agencies (PGAs) to put the single window in place. The Document Image System (DIS) allows the government to electronically submit paperwork required throughout the import and export processes. There is also interoperability of PGAs as well as a set of PGA Messages.

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