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Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

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Signing Authorities for the Importation of Goods (National Capital Region and Greater Toronto Area)

Circular Note No. XDC-0582 of April 12, 2012

The Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (Office of Protocol) presents its compliments to Their Excellencies the Heads of Diplomatic Missions and notified Chargés d’affaires, a.i. accredited to Canada, and to the Heads of International Organizations and other offices established in Canada, and has the honour to update its policy on signing authorities with specific regard to the importation of goods, including alcoholic beverages. This note supersedes and cancels the Department’s Circular Note XDC-0217 of February 3, 2009.

The Department points out that the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is primarily responsible for the implementation and regulation of border legislation and the implementation of programs and services for the diplomatic community concerning customs privileges in Canada. In Ontario, in the case of alcoholic beverages purchased in bond, the CBSA supports and cooperates with the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) to enforce various statutes, in particular those dealing with the sale and delivery of alcohol and the issuance of permits.

The Department is responsible for providing the CBSA and the LCBO with the list of accredited persons with delegated signing authority, along with their specimen signature. Those agencies must ensure that customs clearance operations, including those related to the release of alcoholic beverages in sufferance and bonded warehouses, are duly authorized and authenticated. The absence of a name on the list of signing authorities will automatically delay the processing of the merchandise import demand.

1. The list for diplomatic missions in the National Capital Region

To help the CBSA and the LCBO ensure the accuracy, validity and optimal effectiveness of customs clearance operations for goods intended for official use by diplomatic missions in Ottawa and personal use by diplomatic officers and members of the administrative and technical staff residing in the National Capital Region, including operations relating to the importation of alcoholic beverages, the Department relies on the cooperation of the diplomatic missions to provide it with the following by way of note:

  • a specimen signature from the Head of Mission, the Chargé d’affaires, a.i, and other diplomatic officers authorized to sign correspondence with regard to the duty-free importation or purchase of goods intended for the official use of the mission or its accredited staff; and  
  • periodic updates, as needed.

2. The list for consular posts in the Greater Toronto Area (NEW)

As in the case of diplomatic missions, the Department wishes to help the CBSA and the LCBO to facilitate customs clearance operations for goods intended for official use by consular posts and personal use by consular officers and employees in the Greater Toronto Area, including operations relating to the importation of alcoholic beverages. In that regard, the Department now relies on the cooperation of the diplomatic missions to provide it with the following by way of note:

  • a specimen signature from any Head of Consular Post in the Greater Toronto Area and other career consular officers authorized to sign correspondence with regard to the duty-free importation or purchase of goods intended for the official use of the consular post or its career consular officers and employees; and
  • periodic updates, as needed.

Reference

Customs privileges granted to diplomatic missions, consular posts and international organizations - Memorandum D21-1-1

The Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (Office of Protocol) avails itself of this opportunity to renew to Their Excellencies the Heads of Diplomatic Missions and notified Chargés d’affaires, a.i. accredited to Canada, the assurances of its highest consideration.

Ottawa, April 12, 2012


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Date Modified:
2013-01-15