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Single Window Initiative (SWI) - Survival Guide for importing tires under TC (Transport Canada)

Posted by Freight Forwarding Dept. - Cole International on Feb 19, 2020 9:00:00 AM

The new SWI landscape

The Single Window Initiative means several changes for importers:

  • how you need to submit documentation is in flux;
  • when that documentation is needed has changed; and
  • which documentation is required is also shifting.

SWI_Series_01_2019-1-1Our goal is to help you understand what is expected for the new “how, when, and what” of SWI requirements relating to the items you ship. These updates guide importers through specific commodities or categories of commodities, and the Participating Government Agencies (PGAs) that are affected.

How, when, and what

  • Single Window Initiative requires all import documentation to be prepared and submitted before the shipment reaches customs.
  • SWI is a new way of submitting documentation. All docs will be submitted using the Integrated Import Declaration (IID). Some of the requirements for how you submit are changing. For example: some documents that needed to be faxed now require an uploaded electronic image or just the document number.
  • There may be changes to which documents are required under SWI.
  • The launch date of SWI is still unknown, but it’s time to get proactive and adjust your workflow to ensure paperwork is ready before you ship.

Why importers need to know

Under the new SWI, it’s important that you understand which Participating Government Agencies (PGAs) are regulating your products. Some products are regulated by multiple PGAs, and the PGAs regulating your products may have changed under SWI. Additionally, each PGA and the CBSA can issue penalties for incorrect and missing documents. Understanding what information and documentation is needed for clearance will make the clearance process into Canada smoother and more efficient.

What has changed?

Transport Canada (TC) - TiresSWI_Computer_Series_Tires

  • The requirements for importers have not changed with SWI. The method of reporting this information has changed. Importers are required to submit their information electronically to Transport Canada with each import.
  • A vendor or importer should provide a full description of the tires being imported. This description should include whether the tires are new or used, the type of vehicle or machine the tires are being imported for, and whether it is a tire or a tire with a rim assembly.
  • Importers of tires must review the Motor Vehicle Safety Act and Motor Vehicle Tires Safety Regulations. The requirements in Appendix A apply only to businesses that import tires for resale. Tires imported for personal use or corporate fleet use must meet Canadian standards and are marked with one of the symbols in Appendix B.

Tire symbols

Symbols on tires are the manufacturer’s certification that all safety standards have been met.

  • National Safety Mark: the symbol used by a manufacturer as certification that all Canadian Safety standards have been met.
  • DOT: the symbol used by the U.S. industry as certification that all U.S. safety standards have been met.
  • DOT-R: the symbol used by the U.S. as certification that all U.S. safety standards have been met prior to being retreaded, remolded, or recapped.
  • JIS: the symbol used by a manufacturer as certification that all applicable Japanese safety standards have been met.

Requirements under SWI

Importer contact information

  • Contact Name and address
  • Email address
  • Phone number

Manufacturer contact information

  • Contact Name and address
  • Email address
  • Phone number

Product Category

Tire Class

  • New
  • Retreaded
  • Used

Tire Type

  • On-Road
  • Off-Road

Tire Size

  • Below 14 in
  • 14 in
  • 15 in
  • 16 in
  • 17 in
  • 18 in
  • 19 in
  • Above 19 in

Intended use

Reason for import

  • Sale
  • Export
  • Not Regulated
  • For Retread
  • Scrap Tire


The brand name of the commodity being imported must be provided.

Compliance statement

Affirmation of Compliance

  • For new/retreaded tires from all countries
  • For new/retreaded tires from the USA
  • For used tires from all countries
  • For used tires from the USA

Cole's guidance on importing tires under Transport Canada (TC)

Knowing and understanding the key regulations will help smooth the process of importing tires under Transport Canada:

  • Read D-memorandum D19-12-2 to learn about CBSA’s rules on importing tires.
  • Please note: new and used tires imported for re-sale have different requirements than tires for personal or fleet use.
  • Used tires must be clean when they arrive at the border. If they have any dirt, they may be refused entry into Canada.
  • All importers bringing in tires must comply with Transport Canada’s safety regulations.

For SWI, being proactive is your best strategy—gather all your information and documentation as far in advance as possible. Importers who know the requirements for the products they’re importing, and understand the new processes under SWI, will have a much smoother import experience.

As you adjust to the new requirements and workflow of the Single Window Initiative, we're here to help. Our customs team is ready to help you understand the SWI and its new requirements for your commodities—contact us today!

Speak to our SWI Support Team

SWI. It's what we do.