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Change in Non-Compliant Mini-Truck Importations

The Environmental Protection Agency has regulatory authority of motor vehicles under the Clean Air Act (CAA). Mini-trucks imported in violation of the CAA will be processed for export only.

EPA regulations 40 C.F.R. § 85.1703(a) provide criteria by which a vehicle may be excluded from the motor vehicle requirements of the CAA. In order to qualify for exclusion from the EPA motor vehicle requirements as non-road vehicles, mini-trucks must be in an admissible condition prior to importation. EPA will no longer approve modifications to imported mini-trucks in a FTZ when those modifications would serve to reclassify the mini-truck as a non-road vehicle.

Therefore effective immediately, CBP will:

  • Not allow admission of any non-compliant mini-trucks into an FTZ for modification unless the importer received written permission on a per shipment basis from EPA. This will apply to those shipments already in the U.S. or in transit to the U.S. prior to September 30, 2008. Those shipments where an importer was unable to comply with this requirement prior to September 30, 2008 will be refused admission and exported.
  • Effective October 1, 2008 CBP will not admit any EPA non-compliant mini-trucks into an FTZ regardless of status. All EPA non-compliant mini-trucks will be refused entry and processed for export only.
  • For those shipments where CBP has determined that seizure is applicable, the seizure shall be processed for export only.

Questions related to this matter should be directed to Ms. Virginia McPherson at (202) 863-6563.