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Glossary of Terms, Definitions, and Abbreviations


Carnet Service Bureau (CSB): An organization authorized to issue Carnets under the direction of the Guaranteeing Association.


Certificates: The top section of the certificate is the counterfoil and the bottom section is the voucher. Certificates are issued in sets of two.  A yellow set for leaving or re-entering the U.S., a white set for entering or exiting a foreign country, and a blue (transit) set for passing through or stopping over in one country in order to enter another.


Claim: A notice from an importing customs authority that a violation of the Carnet system has occurred.


CS (Commercial Sample): Item for displaying or demonstrating to solicit orders.


Counterfoil: The top section of a certificate.  See certificates above.


Duties: Customs duties and all other taxes and charges payable from an ATA Carnet importation.


EF (Exhibition and Fair): Trade, industrial, agricultural or crafts exhibition, fair or similar show or display; exhibition organized for a charitable purpose or to promote learning, art, craft, sport, scientific or cultural activity, to promote friendship between peoples, religious knowledge or worship. Does not include exhibits for private purposes in shops or premises with a view to selling.


Expiration Date: The date for re-exportation given by the USCIB at the time the Carnet is issued. All merchandise must leave the country of importation before midnight on that date.


Final Date for Re-exportation: USCIB will set an expiration date at the time your Carnet is issued. However, a foreign Customs authority has the right to restrict any shipment and require that the goods leave prior to the date granted by USCIB. If a customs authority limits your stay, this will be noted on the importation counterfoil at the time of entry.


Guaranteeing Association: The organization set up in every Carnet country  to guarantee to customs authorities that all import duties, taxes, and penalties will be paid for any claim issued against a Carnet that was not properly utilized. The U.S. Treasury has authorized USCIB to be the Guaranteeing Association for all Carnets that originate in or enter the United States.


Holder: A corporation or individual on whose behalf the Carnet has been issued. A Holder must have a beneficial interest in the merchandise being exported; therefore, a customs broker or freight forwarder cannot be listed as a Holder of a Carnet even when acting in their professional capacity on behalf of a third party.


PE (Professional Equipment): Equipment for the press or television broadcasting; cinematographic equipment; equipment for testing or repair of machinery; other equipment for the exercise of a calling, tools of the trade.


Penalty: In addition to duty, a charge levied by a foreign customs authority against a Carnet which has not been utilized in conformance with all conditions of the Carnet system.


Premium: A non-refundable fee paid by a Holder to secure a surety bond..


Refundable Claim Deposit:  A flat fee of $250, to be used as security, applicable to only Federal, state, and local government agencies.


Security Deposit: Cash, surety bond, Refundable Claim Deposit, or Written Agreement deposited with USCIB to indemnify USCIB as a result of USCIB's payment on behalf of a Carnet holder.


Surety Bond:  One form of security deposit, where the Holder pays a premium to secure the bond, which can be obtained from any of the 200 companies authorized by the US Treasury Department and admitted in New York State.


USCIB: United States Council for International Business


Voucher: The bottom section of a certificate.  See certificates above.


Written Agreement: A form of security available only to USCIB members.