CBP Planning to Start Development of ACE Successor in 2025
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is looking to start in 2025 development of a new system that will ultimately replace the Automated Commercial Environment.
In a paper submitted to a recent meeting of CBP’s Commercial Customs Operations Advisory Committee, CBP said ACE 2.0 will not be a refresh of ACE or a set of incremental changes but instead is intended to be a new system based on a rethinking of how current and future technologies can be leveraged to provide a true single window for international trade. CBP expects that ACE 2.0 will implement the reimagined trade processes developed as part of the 21st Century Customs Framework and match “the natural flow of the supply chain.”
The modernized entry process provided by ACE 2.0 will include high-level transformations, CBP said, such as supply chain transparency, complete automation of the supply chain, data acquisition from non-traditional actors, international standards development over forcing technical changes, and modernization of the in-bond process. Among other things, the new system will allow CBP and its partner government agencies to receive better quality data much earlier in the supply chain, often in near-real time from traditional as well as non-traditional actors, which will facilitate faster government responses with earlier determinations on cargo.
CBP added that ACE 2.0 will incorporate several important design features, including interoperability and digital twins. Interoperability means the system will work with a variety of technologies so it can communicate with legacy and future systems, blockchain, and distributed ledger technology. A digital twin is a digital representation of the physical item and CBP said adopting this premise will allow it and its trade partners to build “a completely transparent supply chain.”
For now, CBP is working with COAC to review high-level ideas about reimagined processes for cargo entry, collections, exports, post-entry, and post-audit. CBP is also organizing internal working groups to evaluate those processes from a government perspective. From there, CBP will coordinate with the Trade Support Network to develop these ideas in further detail.
CBP is also moving forward with five projects to test the impact of some ACE 2.0 concepts on different portions of the trade universe, namely steel, natural gas, oil, food safety, and e-commerce. Each project uses some form of DLT and/or blockchain technologies to advance new capabilities. In addition, through the Silicon Valley Innovation Program, CBP is pursuing pre-arrival/pre-release data for steel and pipeline commodity imports.
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