The Automated Manifest System (AMS) is one of the systems within the Automated Commercial System (ACS). AMS contains three subsystems based upon the mode of transportation or conveyance into the United States: sea, air, and rail. The sea and rail information is maintained on one data base. The air data base is maintained separately because these manifests and bills of lading are processed differently.
The AMS system allows for the collection of electronic cargo information, either prior to loading of the cargo or prior to the arrival of the cargo in the United States by the mode of commercial transportation (sea, air, and rail). The information provided to CBP consist of that information about the cargo which is determined to be reasonably necessary to enable CBP to identify high-risk shipments so as to ensure cargo safety and security and prevent smuggling pursuant to the laws that are enforced and administrated by CBP.
As a result, the AMS system reduces the reliance of paper and facilitates trade by enabling carriers to receive cargo status notifications prior to arrival which allows carriers to make decisions about staging the cargo; and arrange for examination, release or in-bond movement. This schedule includes disposition authorities for the following systems that are related to the manifest processing function: the Air Manifest System and the Sea/Rail Manifest System.