On January 25, 2021, new licensing requirements for aluminum products will take effect under a US Commerce Department final rule, which established the Aluminum Import Monitoring and Analysis (AIM) System. The new system acts similarly to the Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis System: it will require aluminum importers, or their Customs brokers, to submit information via an online portal to obtain a license. The portal will automatically issue the license, and the accompanying license number must be provided with the entry summary documentation.
According to a press release from the Commerce Department, dated December 23rd, the licensing process will require importers or their brokers “to report the volume, value, country of origin, country of most recent cast, and certain other information.” After a one-year grace period, “Commerce will require importers to report the country where imported aluminum products were smelted.”
AIM will allow the US government to track aluminum product import trends. “The new program will enable Commerce and the public to better detect potential transshipment and circumvention involving aluminum products – helping to ensure that domestic producers can compete on a level playing field.”
The new system, found at https://www.trade.gov/aluminum, will be ready for use on January 4, 2021. At that time, “potential license applicants will be able to obtain their user identification numbers and apply for a license.” A list of current HTS codes for which a license will be required has been published on International Trade Administration’s (ITA’s) website, along with an FAQ. The site also provides instructional videos, and users can register for a virtual demo. Once the system is in place, Commerce will seek additional comments on system improvements.