Setting up the CARM Portal: A Walkthrough for Importers

If you are a Canadian importer, you will need to have access to your CARM client portal. Please follow the instructions below to gain access to your account. You can find the official CBSA set up guide here.

Please have the B3 for one of your recent import transactions ready. You can find this document in the billing package you receive from Carson.

  1. Navigate to the CARM client portal and select ‘Log in to the CARM Client Portal’

2. Click ‘Option 2: Continue to GCKey’

3. Click ‘Sign Up’

4. Follow the steps to create a user account

5. After your profile creation, you will be greeted with the First time setup page, from which two options will be available: Request access to my employer, or Register my business. Click ‘Register My Business‘.*

*It is possible one of your colleagues has already created an account for your business. If this is the case, you will be notified by the portal. Please then use the ‘Request access to my employer’ search option rather than clicking on ‘Register my business’.

6. Enter your business number as prompted. If you are uncertain of your business number, note that the first nine digits will match your GST number followed by the letters ‘RM’ and your sub-account number, conventionally this is ‘0001’.*

i.e. 888888888RM0001

*You may check a recent invoice/B3 from Carson if you are uncertain.

7. Enter the business’ legal name and address. Note that the legal name and address must be exact. This will match what the CRA has on file for your business.*

*If you have issues with this section, please contact the CARM support desk. Select the topic of “Online portal support” and “CARM Client Portal – setting up my business account”. Include a description of: “I require assistance activating my business account.”

8. Select your preferred security questions. We recommend the following two:

  1. ‘What is the transaction number and total duties and taxes of one of your recent transactions?’
  2. ‘What is the balance of your last Statement of Account?’

9. For the transaction number question, find a recent invoice from Carson and its associated B3.

  • Enter the transaction number (starts with ‘15008’)
  • Enter the total amount of duties and taxes

10. For the SOA question, you may require our assistance as not all importers receive a copy of this statement. You may contact our office if you are uncertain.*

*If you cannot reach us, you can also contact the CARM support desk.

11. Once you have access to the portal, be sure to provide Carson with access so we can continue to serve your account. This can be done by clicking on the ‘Manage pending third party requests’ link.

12. In the ‘Received requests’ tab, you should see a request from Carson. Please accept the request and provide us with ‘BAM’ or ‘business management’ access and provide us with full transparency.

For any additional questions, please call 888-422-7766

BC Apparel Manufacturers Needed

The Western Economic Diversification BC office is looking for manufacturers who can support a major defence procurement for the products listed below. If you are a BC apparel or accessory manufacturer with specific expertise in these products and can support MOQs of ~1000pcs for each garment type, we want to hear from you:

  • Flight suits
  • Uniforms for flight crews and CSRs (dress pants, white dress shirts, blazer, dresses, skirts)
  • Overalls
  • Class 2 high-vis outerwear (winter wear, rain gear)
  • Polos, t-shirts, sweatshirts, cargo/non-cargo style work pants
  • Accessories (pilot wings, name pins, patches, epaulettes, scarves, neckties safety vests)

Complete details (ie. designs, materials, price range, timing) are still not available and we are simply collecting expressions of interest before the full RFP becomes available.

Interested parties should email with the subject: “WED Defence Project”. Please ensure to specify your capabilities and the product category / type where you specialize.

Market Update: Congestion Surcharges

Shippers might be paying 332% more per box than they were this time last year, yet they’re having to put up with the worst schedule reliability in the history of the shipping container industry.

In the first five months of 2021, 401 vessel arrivals on the transpacific and 144 on Asia-Europe were over 14 days late, according to data from Sea-Intelligence. Putting these numbers in perspective, the combined 2012 to 2020 total of such late vessel arrivals was 388 on the transpacific and 69 on Asia-Europe.

With prices increasing and schedule reliability still an issue, here are a few key updates from the major carriers relating to congestion surcharges —


One of the world’s largest shipping companies, Hapag-Lloyd, informed Value Added Surcharge(VAD), says due to the continuation of extraodinary demand from China and the resulting operational challenges along the transport chain, HPL will charge $4000/20’ and $5000/40’ in destination as VAD effective August 15, 2021.


MSC have announced that they will be collecting a Congestion surcharge payable as a local charge collected effective September 1, 2021 at destination.

The amount is USD 800/20’ 1000/40’ 1125/hc and 1266/45’ and applicable for all equipment types.


Matson has announced their third increase to USWC Congestion Surcharge effective August 5, 2021, reflecting a $2,000 OSPF increase.


With the consistent congestion in U.S. and Canadian Ports, ZIM will implement Port Surcharge and Destination Delivery Charges effective from August 1, 2021.

We’re Here To Help

Keeping in close contact with Carson regarding booking management is essential to mitigating risks. Please reach out to us directly so we can assess your needs and make considerations in the best interest of your business.

Navigating Supply Chain Constraints and Trucking Rates

The capacity issue that has been looming over the trucking market for months is showing no signs of being resolved in any way for the remainder of the year. Strong demand has resulted in rates continuing to rise month over month across van, flatbed and reefer.

The ability for carriers to add capacity is limited by parts shortages that are holding back truck, trailer and chassis production, with the demand for trucking volume expected to continue moving forward as retail sales remain high and retailer inventories remain low. But analysts also see demand outside of retail.

“While not as large as retail in terms of overall freight generation, capital goods spending is freight intensive, and the coming capex boom will certainly benefit freight demand in the next few quarters,” says ACT Research’s Vice President and Senior Analyst, Tim Denoyer.

Carson 3PL Ground Transport Services

Carson is now offering FTL, LTL Ground Transport anywhere in North America. Whether moving in a van, flat deck, step deck, we have you covered.

Employee Spotlight: Marty Sarmiento

Marty joined the Carson Freight Team in October 2020 and brought with him over 15+ years of North American Ground Transport experience. He is familiar with all aspects of ground transport, from a simple pallet, to oversized cargo moving on decks that require permits and pilot cars.Although Carson has always offered Ground Transport, with Marty onboard we have been able to expand our offerings, providing clients with competitive pricing and expert customer service.

Whether you are moving freight within Canada, or importing or exporting cross border with the US, we encourage you to reach out to Marty and our ground team at to learn more about how our team can provide options to keep your domestic supply chain running smoothly.

Webinar: Countervailing & Antidumping Duties: Canada’s Trade Protectionism Tools

Carson International is pleased to partner with Miller Thomson LLP for another instalment in our webinar series addressing Canada/U.S. cross-border trade developments and updates.

The CBSA recently made preliminary determinations under subsection 38(1) of the Special Import Measures Act (Canada) (“SIMA”), that China and Vietnam had been dumping and subsidizing upholstered domestic seating (“UDS”) entering the Canadian market. We will review the specifics of this case and also provide links to all the present SIMA Actions presently in force.

This webinar will discuss the recent action taken by the CBSA as well as the CBSA’s administration of SIMA. In general, the SIMA investigative process takes about 260 days from the time the CBSA receives a complaint until the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) makes a finding. This webinar will detail the steps that will be taken during this investigative process to determine whether countervailing and/or antidumping duties should be applied.

Join the conversation regarding SIMA in order to optimize duty and tax minimization strategies and reduce customs valuation regulatory risk.


Dave Pentland, Carson International
Dan Kiselbach, Miller Thomson LLP

Webinar Details:

Thursday, July 15, 2021
Time: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. PST

Webinar connection details will be provided by Miller Thomson before the webinar.

R.S.V.P. by July 14, 2021 at 4:00 p.m. PST.

Webinar: Forced Labour and Human Rights Responsibility

Carson International is proud to sponsor this webinar organized by the Canadian Apparel Federation.

Join the Canadian Apparel Federation and Borden Ladner Gervais LLP for a presentation on forced labour and modern slavery in global supply chains – with a focus on proposed Modern Slavery legislation in Canada.  Given recent customs enforcement in the US and growing concerns expressed by the Canadian government there will be increasing calls for apparel firms to address this issue in their supply chains.

The agenda will include: 

  • What is forced labour?
  • New CUSMA/USMCA and Customs Tariff provisions (what are they; risks and consequences of import control; getting stopped at the border; follow  on complaints; risks re the US)
  • Enforcements trends of similar measures in the US
  • Avoiding customs entanglements: doing human rights due diligence
  • Related Canadian and global legislation (Modern Slavery Acts)

Webinar Details:

Tuesday, June 15, 2021
Time: 2:00 — 3:00pm EDT

Market Update: Freight Congestion in Southern China

Delays, congestion and container availability problems are increasing at ports and terminals in southern China, including Yantian, Shekou and Nansha, as operations have slowed in an effort to contain outbreaks of COVID-19.

Container dwell times at Yantian rose to eight days the week of May 30, with median dwell times of 18 to 21 days by June 7. Container availability dropped at the three ports, skipping the ports of call, and resulting in empty boxes not being dropped off at ports.

Below are some key updates relating to ports in southern China —

Port Updates

  • Port of Yantian: Only accepting ETA 3 days with advanced appointment, not accepting any truck operators who have been to Nansha/Guangzhou area. Mandatory 14 day quarantine required.
  • Port of Shekou: Only accepting ETA 3 days with advanced appointment. Truck operators require negative COVID-19 test.
  • Da Chan Bay: Only accepting ETA 7 days with license plate from Shenzen area. Trucker operators require negative COVID-19 test.
  • Port of Nansha: Only accepting ETA 7 days, with certain areas still closed. Those from high risk areas (such as Guangzhou or Shenzhen) require a mandatory 14-day quarantine and negative COVID-19 test.
  • Bounded warehouse: Truck operators require negative COVID-19 test and not have visited any high risk areas.

In this scenario, shippers can expect goods to be delayed to well into the end of June, if not July.

Strain on Global Supply Chains

These challenges in southern China are the latest in a saga of global container shipping issues that have plagued shippers, forwarders and carriers for more than a year — from port congestion, to equipment shortages, to blank sailing, to skyrocketing freight rates.

Many importers have pivoted to airfreight given ongoing capacity and timeliness issues in ocean freight, although air cargo space is also limited.

We’re Here To Help

Keeping in close contact with Carson regarding booking management is essential to mitigating risks. Please reach out to us directly so we can assess your needs and make considerations in the best interest of your business.

Webinar: Customs Verifications (Audits) – What you going to do when they come for you?

Carson International is pleased to partner with Miller Thomson LLP for another instalment in our webinar series addressing Canada/U.S. cross-border trade developments and updates.

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will conduct verifications on a periodic basis. This webinar will discuss relevant risk elements and the methodology used by customs authorities to undertake a customs verification. CBSA customs verifications are designed to measure compliance rates and revenue loss. The three most common types of verifications are: 

  • Valuation verifications
  • Tariff classification verifications
  • Origin verifications 

Join the conversation regarding CBSA’s verification methodologies and the steps that should be taken by importers to mitigate the impact of the CBSA’s verification.


Dave Pentland, Carson International
Dan Kiselbach, Miller Thomson LLP

Webinar Details:

Thursday, May 27, 2021
Time: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. PST

Webinar connection details will be provided by Miller Thomson before the webinar.

R.S.V.P. by May 26, 2021 at 4:00 p.m. PST.

Webinar — Getting Ready for CARM

CARM is a Canada Border Services Agency multi-year project to simplify and modernize their accounting and data management systems to provide the commercial trade community with a streamlined method of interaction with the CBSA. This new CBSA initiative will affect all importers.

Join us on May 13 for our CARM info session where we will ensure you have everything you need to know as we move through the implementation process together:

  • Key dates
  • How to prepare for Release 1 on May 25, 2021
  • Changes to import bonds


Dave Pentland, Carson International
Lisa Hennessy, Vice President, Avalon Risk Management

Webinar Details:

Getting Ready for CARM
Thursday, May 13, 2021
Time: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. PST