FCN4 Importers Under the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act

March 2019

The purpose of this notice is to provide information on registration, filing, and reporting requirements to persons that are required to register, or that choose to register, as importers under Part 1 of the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act.  

Persons that import fuel from outside Canada or that bring fuel from a place in Canada into the proposed listed provinces of Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario, Saskatchewan on or after April 1, 2019, as proposed, or into the proposed listed provinces of Nunavut or Yukon on or after July 1, 2019, as proposed, should carefully review the information contained in this notice since a clear understanding of the legislative provisions is key to remaining compliant with the Act.

For more information on the other types of registration under the Act and the registration process, refer to Fuel Charge Notice FCN1, Registration Under the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act.

The information in this notice is for reference purposes only and does not replace the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act or its regulations. The information described in this notice is also based, in part, on the Draft Regulations Amending Part 1 of Schedule 1 and Schedule 2 to the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act. The Draft Regulations were included as attachments to the news release entitled Department of Finance Announcing Climate Action Incentive Payments and Launch of Fuel Charge Consultations, that was issued on October 23, 2018. Any reference that is made in this notice to April 1, 2019 or July 1, 2019 is as proposed in the Draft Regulations. Any reference that is made in this notice to a particular listed province refers to Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nunavut, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Yukon, as proposed in the Draft Regulations. Any commentary contained in this notice should not be taken as a representation by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) that the Draft Regulations will eventually be made in their current form.

Should there be any discrepancy between the information in this notice and the legislative provisions in the Act or its regulations, the legislative provisions apply. For more information about the Act and its regulations, including all related technical publications, go to Fuel charge technical information.

All legislative references in this publication are to the Act, unless otherwise specified.

Overview

As part of the Government of Canada’s initiative to implement a federal carbon pollution pricing system, and taking into consideration provincial carbon pollution pricing systems, the Government of Canada has developed a federal carbon pollution pricing system composed of a fuel charge that applies to fossil fuels and an output‑based pricing system (OBPS) for industrial facilities.Footnote 1

The federal system applies in provinces and territories where a provincial or territorial carbon pollution pricing system has not been put into place or the system does not meet the federal standard. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will be responsible for administering and enforcing the fuel charge component of the federal system beginning April 1, 2019, as proposed, for the proposed listed provinces of Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario and Saskatchewan and beginning July 1, 2019, as proposed, for the proposed listed provinces of Nunavut and Yukon (the listed provinces). For the applicable rates of the charge on the various fuel types and combustible waste, go to Fuel Charge Rates.

This notice provides information on the requirements to register as an importer, as well as on reporting and filing obligations. Persons that This notice provides information on the requirements to register as an importer, as well as on reporting and filing obligations. Persons that import fuel into Canada at a location in a listed province or that bring fuel into a listed province from a place in Canada should carefully review the information included in this notice and should also familiarize themselves with the Act, its regulations and other related notices. They may also contact the CRA for additional information and clarification.

Information on registration

Registration as an importer can be either mandatory or voluntary depending on the nature of a person’s business activities in a listed province.

Mandatory registration

Under subsection 56(1), a person that imports a type of fuel at a location in a listed province or that brings a type of fuel into a listed province is required to be registered as an importer in respect of that type of fuel unless the person imports or brings fuel of that type into a listed province:

Under section 126, a person that is required to be registered as an importer but does not apply for registration as and when required is liable to pay a penalty of $2,000.

Voluntary registration

Subsection 56(3) provides that a person that is not required under subsection 56(1) to be registered as an importer in respect of a type of fuel may apply to be registered as an importer in respect of that type of fuel if:

  • the person is an interjurisdictional rail carrier in respect of that type of fuel;
  • the person, in the ordinary course of a business:
    • imports fuel of that type, in a supply tank of a locomotive, at a location in a listed province;
    • brings fuel of that type into a listed province in a supply tank of a locomotive, from a place Canada; or
    • removes fuel of that type, in a supply tank of a locomotive, from a listed province; and
  • the person is not required to be registered in respect of that type of fuel as a specified air carrier, an air carrier, a specified marine carrier, a marine carrier, a specified rail carrier or a rail carrier.

Exception

Section 56 does not apply to a person in respect of a type of fuel if the person is, or is required to be, registered as a distributor, a specified air carrier, an air carrier, a specified marine carrier, a marine carrier, a specified rail carrier or a rail carrier in respect of that type of fuel.

The information in the remainder of this notice is for importers who voluntarily register.

Timing of registration

A person that is required to be registered as an importer in respect of a type of fuel must apply for registration before the later of:

  • April 1, 2019, for Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario and Saskatchewan or July 1, 2019, for Nunavut and Yukon; and
  • the earlier of:
    • the day on which the person first imports fuel of that type—other than fuel that is imported in a supply tank of a vehicle or fuel that is gasoline, kerosene, light fuel oil or propane in a quantity that does not exceed 200 litres—at a location in a listed province, and
    • the day on which the person first brings fuel of that type—other than fuel that is brought in a supply tank of a vehicle or fuel that is gasoline, kerosene, light fuel oil or propane in a quantity that does not exceed 200 litres—into a listed province from a place in Canada.

If a person qualifies to voluntarily register as an importer, the person may apply for registration at any time.

Example – Registration 

A store specializing in cottage and camping supplies, which is located in a listed province, imports kerosene on a weekly basis for sale to its customers. The store is well known as a place to purchase kerosene for heating and cooking needs.

August 2019 – no need to register
On August 1, 2019, it imports 125 litres of kerosene into the listed province for sale to its clients.

The store does not have to register as an importer or pay the charge because it is importing a quantity of kerosene that does not exceed 200 litres.

October 2019 – must register
As a result of a cost-cutting exercise, the store determines that it would save 30% in costs by switching to bi‑weekly shipments and increasing the quantity imported by 225 litres, to 350 litres of kerosene. On October 15, 2019, the store imports 350 litres of kerosene.

As the quantity of fuel being imported is above the 200‑litre threshold, the store is required to register as an importer before October 15, 2019, and report and pay the charge by November 30, 2019.

Applying for registration

To apply for registration as an importer, a person must complete Form L400, Fuel Charge Registration. Even where the person applies for more than one type of registration, only one registration form is required, unless an application for authority to file separate returns under subsection 88(1) is submitted. The person must also complete Form L400-1, Fuel Charge Registration Schedule, or Form L400-2, Fuel Charge Registration Schedule – Road Carrier, or both, depending on the type of registration for which it is applying. Information on other registration types can be found in Fuel Charge Notice FCN1, Registration Under the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act.

Registration forms can be submitted electronically using the “Submit documents” function in My Business Account. If the person submits a registration application electronically, that person will be provided with a confirmation number. This confirmation number should be retained for follow-up on the status of the application.

The person can also send the completed registration forms by mail to the following address:

Sudbury Tax Centre
Fuel Charge Program
Post Office Box 20000, Station A
Sudbury ON  P3A 5C1

The processing of the fuel charge registration may be delayed in the case of missing or incomplete information.

If the application for registration is approved, the CRA will inform the person in writing of its registration number and the effective date of registration.

Authority for separate returns

Under subsection 88(1), a person that engages in one or more activities in separate branches or divisions may apply to the CRA for authority to file separate returns and rebate applications under Part 1 of the Act for a branch or division. The application to file separate returns must be submitted in the form of a letter at the time of registration.

The person must complete the application and, for each branch or division, confirm that the following requirements are met:

  • the branch or division indicated in the application can be separately identified by reference to its location or the nature of the activities in which it is engaged; and
  • separate records, books of account and accounting systems are maintained for the branch or division.

A separate Form L400 should be used for each branch or division, along with Form L400-1 or Form L400-2 or both, depending on the type of registration for which the person is applying.

The application and forms can be submitted electronically using the “Submit documents” function in My Business Account or by mail to the Sudbury Tax Centre at the address listed above.

If the application to file separate returns is approved, the CRA will inform the person in writing and the authorization will remain in effect until:

  • the person requests the revocation of the authorization in writing;
  • the person fails to comply with any condition of the authorization or any provision of Part 1 of the Act;
  • the CRA is no longer satisfied that the requirements of the authorization are met; or
  • the CRA considers that the authorization is no longer required.

Under these conditions, the CRA will revoke the authorization and send a notice in writing to the person specifying the effective date of the revocation.

Applying for more than one type of registration

A person may be registered as both an importer and a road carrier depending on the person’s business activities. In addition to applying for registration as an importer, a person is also required to apply for registration as a road carrier in respect of a type of fuel that is a qualifying motive fuel if the person uses fuel of that type in a specified commercial vehicle in a listed province.

A registered importer is also required to register as a user of combustible waste if it burns combustible waste, such as tires or asphalt shingles, in a listed province for the purpose of producing heat or energy.

Refer to Fuel Charge Notice FCN6, Road Carriers Under the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, and Fuel Charge Notice FCN7, Users Under the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, for additional information on these types of registration.

Cancelling a registration

Under subsection 65(6), if a person is registered as an importer in respect of a type of fuel, the CRA must cancel that registration when registering that person as a distributor, a user of fuel, a specified air carrier, an air carrier, a specified marine carrier, a marine carrier, a specified rail carrier or a rail carrier, in respect of that type of fuel, or when registering the person as an emitter.

Also, a registered importer that believes it is no longer required to be registered (for example, if ownership changes or business activity ceases) may request that the CRA cancel its registration. The registered importer must notify the CRA in writing when this occurs, noting the reason for requesting the cancellation and the effective date. The CRA must cancel the registration if satisfied that the registration is not required.

The registered importer can submit the request electronically using the “Submit documents” function in My Business Account or by mail to the Sudbury Tax Centre at the address listed in the section “Applying for registration” above. Filing and reporting requirements remain in effect until the effective date of cancellation.

Finally, the CRA may also cancel a registration if it is satisfied that the registration is not required, after giving the person reasonable notice. In this case, the CRA will notify the person of the cancellation and the effective date of the cancellation.

Information on the fuel charge

Generally, a charge applies to 21 types of fuel delivered, transferred, used, produced, imported or brought into Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario or Saskatchewan beginning April 1, 2019, and Nunavut or Yukon beginning July 1, 2019. A charge also applies on combustible waste when it is burned in a listed province for the purpose of producing heat or energy.

Registered importer

A registered importer that imports fuel at a location in a listed province or that brings fuel into a listed province must pay a charge as outlined in section 19. A registered importer may also be required to pay a charge if it produces fuel in a listed province, in accordance with section 21. For more information, refer to the section “Calculating the charge payable by a registered importer in respect of fuel and a listed province” in this notice.

Importing fuel at a location in a listed province or bringing fuel into a listed province

Under section 19, a charge becomes payable when a registered importer imports fuel at a location in a listed province or brings fuel into a listed province. The charge becomes payable at the time the fuel is imported or brought into the listed province by the registered importer. The amount of the charge must be determined under section 40.

However, under subsection 19(4), a charge is not payable by a registered importer if the fuel is brought into the listed province, or is imported at a location in a listed province, in a supply tank of a vehicle and the fuel is for use in the operation of the vehicle or an auxiliary component of the vehicle (for example, the vehicle’s heater or air conditioner) or of an attached vehicle (for example, the heater or air conditioner of a trailer attached to the vehicle).

Under subsection 19(5), the exception in subsection 19(4) does not apply to fuel that is brought into a listed province, or imported at a location in a listed province, by a person:

  • if the fuel is a type of qualifying motive fuel and is brought into a listed province or imported by the person in a supply tank of a specified commercial vehicle of the person and the person:
    • is a registered emitter or is a registered importer or a registered user in respect of that type of fuel; and
    • is required to be registered as a road carrier in respect of that type of fuel but is not so registered;
  • if the fuel is brought in or imported in a supply tank of a locomotive and the person is an interjurisdictional rail carrier in respect of that type of fuel and is not, in respect of that type of fuel, registered as an air, marine or rail carrier;
  • to the extent that the fuel is brought in or imported in a supply tank of an aircraft for use in a covered air journey in respect of the listed province, if the person is an interjurisdictional air carrier in respect of that type of fuel and is not, in respect of that type of fuel, registered as an air carrier, marine carrier or rail carrier; or
  • to the extent that the fuel is brought in or imported in a supply tank of a vessel for use in a covered marine journey in respect of the listed province, if the person is an interjurisdictional marine carrier in respect of that type of fuel and is not, in respect of that type of fuel, registered as an air carrier, marine carrier or rail carrier.

Registered importer that is also a registered road carrier

A registered importer that is also a registered road carrier is required to also comply with all the rules and obligations that apply to registered road carriers. A registered importer that is also a registered road carrier must pay a charge determined under section 40 if the net fuel quantity, determined under section 32, for a reporting period of the road carrier is a positive amount.

For more information on registered road carriers, refer to Fuel Charge Notice FCN6.

Registered importer that is also a registered user of combustible waste

A registered importer that is also a registered user of combustible waste is required to also comply with all the rules and obligations that apply to registered users of combustible waste. A registered importer that is also a registered user of combustible waste and that burns combustible waste in a listed province for the purpose of producing heat or energy must pay a charge under section 25.

For more information on registered users of combustible waste, refer to Fuel Charge Notice FCN7.

Filing and reporting

The reporting period of a registered importer is a calendar month. A registered importer must file a return monthly with the CRA, even if there is no amount owing. The return must be filed by the end of the month following the reporting period.

Forms to complete

The quantity of fuel subject to a charge must be reported by fuel type and listed province. A registered importer must file Form B400, Fuel Charge Return – Registrant, for each reporting period, as well as Form B400-2, Fuel Charge Return Schedule – Registered Importer.

More than one type of registration

If the registered importer holds more than one type of registration, it must report fuel by type and listed province for each registration type. This means that the registered importer must file Form B400 for each registration type and once for each reporting period, as well as

Section 104 provides that a registered importer must keep its records for 6 years after the end of the year to which they relate.

A registered importer must determine the net charge, in the case of fuel, by type and for each listed province for a reporting period for which a return and accompanying return schedule(s) must be filed.

Calculating the charge payable by a registered importer in respect of fuel and a listed province

A registered importer must pay a charge under section 19 in respect of fuel and a listed province when it imports that fuel at a location in a listed province or brings that fuel into a listed province from a place in Canada. This charge becomes payable by the registered importer at the time the fuel is imported or brought into a listed province.

A registered importer must also pay a charge under section 21 in respect of fuel and a listed province when it produces fuel in a listed province. This charge becomes payable by the registered importer at the time the fuel is produced in a listed province.

Therefore, the charge payable is calculated using the formula set out in subsection 40(1):

A × B
Where  
A is the quantity of fuel in respect of which the charge becomes payable
B is the rate in respect of fuel of that type for the listed province applicable at the time the charge becomes payable

Calculating the net charge

Under section 71, every person that is required to file a return must, in the return, determine the net charge for a reporting period for which the return is required to be filed.

After calculating the charge(s) payable and the rebate(s)Footnote 2, if applicable, in respect of fuel and the listed province(s), the registered importer must determine the net charge for a particular reporting period.

The net charge is calculated using the formula set out in section 71:

A + B
Where  
A

is the total of all amounts, each of which is the amount determined for a listed province by the formula

C – D

where

C

is the total of all amounts, each of which is a charge in respect of fuel, other than a charge under subsection 20(3), or combustible waste and the listed province that becomes payable by the person in the particular reporting period

 

D

is the total of all amounts, each of which is an amount of a rebate, other than a rebate for a payment in error under section 49 or a net charge rebate under subsection 71(4), in respect of the listed province payable by the CRA for a reporting period and that is claimed by the person in the return that is required to be filed under section 69 for the particular reporting period

B

is 0 at this timeFootnote 3

If the net charge for a reporting period of a registered importer is a positive amount, the registered importer must pay that amount to the Receiver General no later than the day on or before which the return for the reporting period is required to be filed (that is, by the end of the month following the reporting period for which the net charge becomes payable). For example, fuel imported at a location in a listed province or brought into a listed province in the month of August 2019 must be reported and the net charge paid by the end of September 2019.

Interest and/or penalties may apply to late payments. For information on payment methods, go to Payments to the Canada Revenue Agency.

If the net charge for a reporting period of a registered importer is a negative amount, the registered importer may claim the amount of that net charge as a net charge rebate in the return filed under section 69 for that reporting period. The rebate is payable to the registered importer by the CRA.

Example (continued) 

Based on the facts set out in the example above, the store imports 350 litres of kerosene on October 15, 2019 and is required to register as an importer by October 15, 2019, and it must report and pay the net charge by November 30, 2019.

The amount of the charge payable is calculated using the formula A × B

where

A  is 350 litres
B  is $0.0516 per litre

The charge payable is $18.06 (350 litres × $0.0516 per litre).

The resulting amount is then used to calculate the net charge using the formula A + B

where

is C − D

where

C  is $18.06
D  is 0 litres since there are no rebates in this case

B  is $0

Therefore, the net charge is $18.06 ($18.06 + $0).

Special rules

Fuel brought into a listed province on behalf of a registered importer

Under section 10, when another person transports fuel into a listed province on behalf of a registered importer, the registered importer, and not the person transporting the fuel, is considered to have brought the fuel into the listed province.

Similar rules apply when fuel is removed from a listed province.

Fuel in transit through a listed province

Under section 11, fuel in transit through a listed province is deemed not to have been brought into the listed province if the following conditions are met:

  • a quantity of fuel is brought into a listed province from a place in Canada in the course of the transportation of the fuel to a place outside the listed province;
  • the fuel is transported without being stored in the listed province (otherwise than in a manner that is solely incidental to the transportation); and
  • the person bringing the fuel into the listed province is a registered emitter or is registered otherwise than only as a road carrier in respect of that type of fuel.

Similar rules apply under section 12 for imported fuel that is in transit through a listed province.

Fuels in a mixture

Under section 16, a mixture of 2 or more fuels is deemed to be fuel of the type that is present in the highest proportion in the mixture. Therefore, the rate to be used when calculating the amount of the charge payable in respect of a mixture is the rate for the type of fuel present in the highest proportion in the mixture.

Biogasoline, biodiesel and biomethane

When biogasoline contained in gasoline, biodiesel contained in light fuel oil, or biomethane contained in natural gas exceeds a certain threshold, the number of litres in the case of gasoline or light fuel oil, or cubic metres in the case of marketable natural gas (MNG) or non-marketable natural gas (NMNG), is adjusted through the following formulas.

Gasoline that contains more than 10% biogasoline

Under subsection 8(5), the quantity of gasoline is calculated using the following formula:

A × (100% − B) ÷ 95%
Where  
A is the number of litres that the gasoline occupies at 15°C
B is the proportion of biogasoline in the product

Example – Biogasoline 

A registered importer has 100 litres of gasoline that contains 12% biogasoline.

The quantity of gasoline that is subject to the charge is calculated using the formula A × (100% − B) ÷ 95%

where

A  is 100 litres (the number of litres that the gasoline occupies at 15°C)
B  is 12% (the proportion of biogasoline)

Therefore, 100 litres × (100% − 12%) ÷ 95% equals 93 litres of gasoline.

Because the gasoline contains 12% biogasoline, only 93 of the 100 litres are subject to the charge.

Light fuel oil that contains more than 5% biodiesel

Under subsection 8(6), the quantity of light fuel oil is calculated using the formula

A × (100% − B) ÷ 98%
Where  
A is the number of litres that the light fuel oil occupies at 15°C
B is the proportion of biodiesel in the product

Example 1 – Biodiesel 

A registered importer has 100 litres of light fuel oil that contains 2% biodiesel.

The formula does not apply because the proportion of biodiesel contained in the quantity of light fuel oil does not exceed 5%. Therefore, the full quantity of 100 litres will be used in the calculation of the charge payable.


Example 2 – Biodiesel


A registered importer has 100 litres of light fuel oil that contains 6% biodiesel.

The quantity of light fuel oil that is subject to the charge is calculated using the formula A × (100% − B) ÷ 98%

where

A  is 100 litres (the number of litres that the light fuel oil occupies at 15°C)
B  is 6% (the proportion of biodiesel)

Therefore, 100 litres × (100% − 6%) ÷ 98% equals 96 litres of light fuel oil.

Because the light fuel oil contains 6% biodiesel, only 96 of the 100 litres are subject to the charge.

Natural gas that contains biomethane

Under subsection 8(7), the quantity of MNG or NMNG is calculated using the formula

A × (100% − B)
Where  
A is the number of cubic metres that the MNG or NMNG occupies at 15°C and 101.325 kPa
B is the proportion of biomethane in the product

Example –  Biomethane 

A registered importer has 100 cubic metres of MNG that contains 2% biomethane.

The quantity of MNG that is subject to the charge is calculated using the formula A × (100% − B)

where

A  is 100 cubic metres (the number of cubic metres that the MNG or NMNG occupies at 15°C and 101.325 kPa)
B  is 2% (the proportion of biomethane)

Therefore, 100 cubic metres × (100% − 2%) equals 98 cubic metres of MNG.

Because the MNG contains 2% biomethane, only 98 of the 100 cubic metres are subject to the charge.

Claiming a rebate

A registered importer may claim a rebate under section 43 or 49, as explained below.

Under section 51, a rebate will not be paid to a person at any time unless the person has filed all returns of which the CRA has knowledge and that are required to be filed on or before that time by the person under the Excise Tax Act, the Income Tax Act, the Excise Act, 2001, and the Air Travellers Security Charge Act.

Fuel removed from a listed province

Under subsection 43(1), a rebate must be paid to a person that is a registered importer and that removes a quantity of fuel from a listed province at a particular time if, at an earlier time in a particular reporting period:

  • the person brought the quantity of fuel into the listed province from a place in Canada or imported the fuel at a location in the listed province and a charge under section 19 was payable by the person in respect of the fuel and the listed province, and that charge was taken into account in the determination of the net charge for the particular reporting period of the person;
  • the person removed the quantity of fuel from a covered facility of the person in the listed province and a charge under subsection 22(1) or (3):
    • became payable by the person at the earlier time in respect of the quantity of fuel and the listed province; and
    • is taken into account in the determination of the net charge for the particular reporting period of the person; or
  • the quantity of fuel was held by the person at, or the quantity of fuel was in transit to, a facility or property of the person in the listed province that ceased, at the earlier time, to be a covered facility of the person and a charge under subsection 22(6) or (7):
    • became payable by the person at the earlier time in respect of the quantity of fuel and the listed province; and
    • is taken into account in the determination of the net charge for the particular reporting period of the person.

The rebate under section 43 is not to be paid in respect of a particular reporting period unless an application for a rebate is filed as part of Form B400-2 with the CRA:

  • no later than the day on or before which the return under section 69 (Form B400) is required to be filed for the last reporting period of the person that ends within 2 years after the end of the particular reporting period; and
  • with Form B400 and any related schedule in respect of the reporting period in which the amount of the rebate is taken into account in determining the net charge for the reporting period.

Payment in excess of the amount payable

Under section 49, a person may claim a rebate if it paid an amount in excess of the amount of the charge that was payable. The rebate is available whether the amount was paid by mistake or otherwise. The amount of the rebate is equal to the amount of the excess.

The rebate payable under section 49 for an amount paid in excess of the amount payable is not to be paid to a person to the extent that:

  • the amount was assessed; or
  • the amount was taken into account as an amount required to be paid for a reporting period for which the CRA has assessed the person.

This rebate is not to be included in the calculation of the net charge. Instead, a registered importer that intends to claim this rebate must submit an amended Form B400 and any related schedule to the CRA.

Any amended return must be filed with the CRA within 2 years of the earlier of:

  • the day that the amount was taken into account in determining the net charge for a reporting period of the registered importer; and
  • the day that the amount was paid to the Receiver General.

Further information

For all technical publications related to the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Actand its regulations, go to Fuel charge technical information.

To make a technical enquiry on the fuel charge or for additional information on the application of the fuel charge for each type of registrant, go to Contact Information – Excise Duties, Excise Taxes, Fuel Charge and Air Travellers Security Charge.

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: