Port of Antwerp

CUSCAR - Customs Cargo Message

Who is it for?

  • Cargo agent(s) or shipping company/companies in case of co-cargo (sender)
  • Belgian Customs (receiver)

Content of the message

The CUSCAR (version D96B) EDIFACT message is used to exchange information concerning the cargo on board a seagoing ship arriving at a Belgian port. This message includes information about the cargo, the containers, the sender, the consignee and those responsible for further handling of the goods.

Main items of information:

  • IMO number of the ship
  • Port call number assigned to the ship by the Port Authority for the call by the ship concerned.

Customs declarants include these items of information in their import or transit declarations, thus permitting automatic clearance of the relevant cargo items in the PLDA.

If the cargo is containerised, the CUSCAR message starts with a list of the containers. For the benefit of the Contraband Inspection & Detection, the following information must be supplied for each container:

  • Container number
  • Type and dimensions
  • Gross weight: total weight of the goods with all their packaging inside the container 

Next come the various "articles" (one per B/L). These are numbered consecutively for each cargo agent, starting from 1 (thus 1 B/L = 1 article number). In this way the article number in combination with the company code for the cargo agent gives the B/L a unique reference within the same cargo list.

The B/L number itself must always be given, together with a reference to the container in which the goods are to be found, with the number of packages in case of containerised cargo.

Within the article the following information must be stated:

  • N° of containers or packages listed on the B/L: in the first instance the expected number of containers/packages must be mentioned. ­If there are differences with the discharge message (COARRI in case of container cargo, IFTSA in case of other cargo), then the information has to be corrected by the cargo agent
  • Type of packaging
  • Description of the goods
  • The total gross weight in kg (Bulk cargo: the net weight in kg)
  • UN/LOCODEs of the port of lading and the destination port
  • The place of unloading in the Belgian seaport (quay code from the fixed code list)
  • Information of the shipper, the consignee, the handler and the forwarder or importer
  • Customs status of the goods