Softwood Lumber CVD Gap Window *Use With Caution*

Much fuss was made this week among operators subject to the  Canadian Softwood Lumber AD/CVD Case CVD GAP period. The issue requiring further clarification has to do with the ability of the U.S. Customs Broker to delay filing of a shipment’s “Entry Summary” for ten business days from the time the shipment is “Arrived” at the U.S. Customs Port of Entry.    

Madison’s spoke with intrepid US Customs Broker Mike Jones [] Thursday for an accurate explanation of circumstances.

With respect to CVD investigations, the U.S. Department of Commerce has 120 days from the date of their Preliminary Determination to file their Final Determination, which in this case, is August 25th  The Final Determination will provide whatever final CVD rates are to be used going forward, as well as confirm the Scope’s captured commodities.  If the DOC does not file by the 120 day deadline, they can no longer collect the applicable CVD Rate Cash Deposits – until they do file, providing what is referred to as a “GAP”.  Because of the U.S. Customs Broker’s ability to manipulate the filing of the Entry Summary, shipments crossing into the U.S. as early as 12:01 a.m. (midnight) (East Coast Time) August 14th, would be exempted from the CVD Cash Deposit requirements, due to the broker filing the August 14thshipment’s Entry Summary after the August 25th Final CVD Determination deadline. Monday, Monday, August 28th would actually be the tenth business day – due to the weekend involved.

Canadian exporters see this looming deadline for the DOC — in conjunction with the normal ten business day window for their Customs Broker to file the Entry Summary — as an potential opportunity to NOT pay preliminary CVD duties on wood shipped to the US during that ten day ‘gap’.

For example: the U.S. Customs Broker defers submitting their Entry Summary data specific to shipments crossing  into the U.S. August 14, since by U.S. Customs Regulations,  they have until August 28 (the tenth business day)  to do so, in the hopes that the DOC does NOT meet the 120 day (August 25) deadline to publish a Final Determination, resulting in their clients not having to tender the Preliminary CVD Cash Deposits on any shipments crossing August 14th and after – until the DOC does publish their Final Determination.

HOWEVER, should the DOC indeed publish their Final Determination on or before the 120thday, the CVD Cash Deposits related to any shipments that crossed August 14th and after, would be required to be tendered to U.S. Customs no later than the tenth business day.   Unless the CVD Cash Deposits are being remitted to  U.S. Customs via an ACH program, or the client has an adequate deposit in the broker’s account, this could create a rush to get the funds specific to shipments that crossed between August 14th and August 28th to the broker for remittance to U.S. Customs before the tenth business day.

This is not a guaranteed window or gap exempting payment of the existing preliminary CVD duties.  This will only be allowed IF the US Department of Commerce does not comply with U.S. DOC AD/CVD regulations and publishes its Final Determination late.

No one can say how long the window will be open.  Due to the significant amount of CVD monies involved, extreme pressure is being put on the DOC to publish their Final timely,  Additional pressure is being put on the Softwood Lumber Agreement negotiators to announce an SLA before the NAFTA negotiations are schedule to begin; August 16th.   Official announcement of an SLA prior to the CVD Final Determination deadline of August 25th, would include dismissal of the AD/CVD case, making the “CVD GAP” issue moot.



Jones & Jones Customs Brokers and Trade Consultants

Michael D. Jones, President – CHB – Inactive Marine NCO

Blaine Phn: 360-332-6090 or 888-536-5079

Fax: 360-332-1282

Cells: Michael 360-220-6101 – Kim 360-201-2180

638 Peace Portal Drive –  Suite 202

Blaine, Washington 98230

J&J Website:

Cargo Tracking:

Filer Code: WQO (Whiskey-Queen-Oscar)