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November 2020

News and Views for the clients of Universal Logistics

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Canada, UK strike transitional trade agreement

Brexit - No deal

Canada and the United Kingdom (UK) struck a transitional trade deal on Saturday, November21, 2020, to protect the flow of goods once Brexit takes place January1, 2021, when the UK is no longer part of the European Union (EU) benefiting from the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement(CETA).

The new deal, Canada-United Kingdom Trade Continuity Agreement (Canada-UK TCA), is an interim measure that will be in place as Canada and the UK work towards negotiating a comprehensive bilateral free trade agreement over the nextyear.

As CETA will no longer apply to the UK beginning January 1, 2021, this new agreement will provide continued access to the benefits of CETA on a bilateral basis, including the elimination of tariffs on98% of Canadian products exported to the UK. This will provide a competitive edge to Canadian exporters and businesses who will maintain preferential access to the UK market, even as the country exits the EU.

At this time the text of the agreement has not been published which leaves exact details up in the air, however, it is likely the new transitional deal will require valid CETA Origin Declarations for2021. Additionally, assuming the new formal deal will incorporate the same Rules of Origin as CETA, importers should confirm with suppliers in the UK if their goods will still qualify for preferential status when made with EU inputs which will be deemed as “non-originating”.

Once the new deal is finalized, we would expect that EU origin goods being shipped from UK suppliers will be deemed as “non-originating” and subject to duty upon import (unless shipped direct from the EU to Canada). Watch for additional updates as information becomes available.

For more information, contact Brian Rowe, Director – Customs Compliance & Regulatory Affairs.

COVID-19 affecting cargo theft trends

Cargo theft

Cargo theft in North America has continued to rise in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the focus and targets of the criminal elements behind these nefarious activities. In April 2020, the number of thefts jumped a staggering 107% when compared to April 2019. As of September 30th, nearly 1,100 incidents had been reported within Canada and the U.S. for the first 9 months of the year.

As we enter the 2020 holiday season, industry experts anticipate an increase in the number of stolen cargo attempts, with a continued emphasis on targeted commodities such as food & beverages as well as COVID-19 influenced items such as toilet paper, paper towels and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

The average value per theft is listed at $230,000 so far this year, up from $151,000 in 2019. Industry professionals attribute this to the increase in medical supplies being targeted.

Furthermore, the stress of the pandemic on employees, in conjunction with workplace uncertainties that include limited and changed hours of operations as well as staff shortages, have also been indicated as key factors leading to enhanced risks.

These pressing issues highlight the importance of protecting your shipments with adequate cargo insurance. We can provide insight and guidance in this area to ensure your freight is protected and you are not exposed to financial peril.

For more information, contact William Sanchez, Manager – Truck Services.

CBSA updated eManifest requirements


The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has confirmed the timetable for full transition of electronic house bill (eHBL) filing requirements that apply to freight forwarders and Non-Vessel Owning Common Carriers (NVOCCs), based on Customs Notice 20-28.

As of November 1, 2020, CBSA has updated the final portion of system enhancements that will enable freight forwarders and NVOCCs to submit eHBL for all consolidated shipments including:

  • Back-to-Back shipments (shipment with 1 shipper and 1 consignee that is coordinated by a freight forwarder who issues a house bill of lading – HBL).
  • Buyer consolidation shipments (shipment with multiple shippers and 1 consignee that is coordinated by a freight forwarder who issues a house bill of lading – HBL).

Note: As a reminder, freight forwarders have been able to file eHBLs for consolidated shipments since July 2017. However, eHBLs for back-to-back and buyer consolidated shipments were suspended due to the need for CBSA to implement upgrades to its processing systems.


  • Freight Remaining on Board (FROB) must be reported using the legacy ACI supplemental reporting.
  • Consolidated in-transit shipments moving from offshore through Canada and destined to the U.S. may be reported using eHBLs or legacy ACI supplemental reports.
  • Consolidated in-transit shipments of U.S. origin goods entering Canada for offshore export will continue to be exempt from the eHBL requirement.

As of January 4, 2021, the use of eHBLs for all consolidated shipments will become mandatory (excluding exceptions noted above).

This will mark the beginning of a six-month informed compliance period, during which time CBSA will issue zero-rated penalties for non-compliance.

Monetary penalties are expected to come into effect as of June 2021.

For more information, contact David Lychek, Manager – Ocean & Air Services.

Time to renew blanket CUSMA/USMCA Origin Declarations


Don’t forget to get your Blanket CUSMA/USMCA Origin Declarations renewed for 2021. Or simplify your life by taking advantage of our CUSMA/USMCA Management Service, the fast, easy way to ensure your CUSMA/USMCA Origin Declarations are fully compliant.

This is important because significant AMPS (Administrative Monetary Penalty System) transactional penalties could apply if you make a claim for preferential treatment without a valid CUSMA/USMCA Origin Declaration.

Get started now by forwarding your 2021 Blanket CUSMA/USMCA Origin Declarations to or contact Ivy Woo, Manager – Customs Compliance Resources, for more information.

Global Spotlight Quiz
Global Spotlight

The Little Mermaid statue
is our mystery city’s most
famous landmark.

Global Spotlight Quiz

Name the home of the
Little Mermaid statue

  • It was originally a fishing village known as “Havn” or“harbour”.
  • Tivoli Gardens amusement park served as an inspiration for Disneyland.
  • In 1711, the bubonic plague swept through the city, and in 1728 a fire destroyed nearly half of its medievalstructures.
  • Strøget is one of the world’s longest pedestrian-only shopping avenues, and a major draw for tourists
  • One of the greenest cities in the world, with plans to be carbon neutral by 2025.
  • More than half of the city’s residents commute bybike.
  • The residents of this city love soccer, handball andlicorice.

See the answer

For more information about shipping freight to or from this city, contact Debbie McGuire, Manager – Freight Solutions.

Quick Tip

Quick Tip

If you’re not able to control your freight, you should at least know who to contact if something goes wrong

Remember, you are always free to appoint someone locally to monitor and handle shipments on your behalf, even when your supplier has made the freight arrangements.

Marion Bradnam, General Manager – Customs Services, Universal Logistics USA

Marion Bradnam, General Manager – Customs Services, Universal Logistics USA

At Your Service:Marion Bradnam, General Manager – Customs Services, Universal Logistics USA

Marion Bradnam joined Universal Logistics USA in 2013, to lead our US Customs Operations team. With over 25 years of industry experience, Marion knows what steps need to be taken to ensure your shipments enter the U.S. without delay. Whether it’s application of China tariffs or document requirements of regulated goods, Marion has the answers.

Expert help on US import requirements is available whenever you need it. Just call (800) 767-8525, ext. 1224 to speak with Marion.

November 2020

is produced monthly for the clients of Universal Logistics. Reader comment and story ideas are welcome. Comments of general interest to all Route readers will, with the permission of the writer, be published. Copyright ©
Universal Logistics Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction for any commercial use is strictly prohibited.

Route is produced by Universal Logistics. Editor: Bettina Scharnberg. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of information contained herein, Universal Logistics accepts no responsibility or liability for errors or omissions. Written correspondence should be forwarded to:

Universal Logistics Inc.
125 Commerce Valley Drive West
Suite 750, Thornhill, Ontario L3T 7W4
Tel: 905-882-4880 Fax: 905-882-2250
Attention: Bettina Scharnberg
Universal Logistics

News and Views for the
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