Writing at Forbes.com, contributor Robert Bowman, the Managing Editor of SupplyChainBrain, outlined a number of changes taking place at U.S. Customs and Border Protection that he felt indicate an apparent shift in the Agency’s focus, “from a single-minded focus on fighting terrorism to one that includes regulating trade.”
Citing the view of Florida attorney Peter Quinter, who chairs the Customs & International Trade Law Group of GrayRobinson, P.A., he summarized a list of 10 predictions about where CBP is headed — and therefore what importers and exporters should be aware of — in the coming year.
The two most salient predictions for our purposes here are as follows:
4. As part of a return to its original mission, CBP will perform a record number of importer audits, aimed at companies attempting to avoid payment of antidumping duties. And don’t think you’re in the clear if you hear nothing right away — the agency has five years in which to audit paperwork on goods flowing into the country. What’s more, said Quinter, an audit almost always results in the finding of a violation, and payment by the importer.
5. The U.S. will continue to crack down on intellectual property violations. CBP will place a high priority on examining and seizing imported counterfeit merchandise. Whether that effort will have any effect on rampant violations in China is another question. Quinter said it’s getting tougher to buy counterfeit merchandise on the street in China, but reports suggest that plenty of sellers still hawk fake merchandise behind closed doors.
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