As part of its commitment to ensure the trade community has the relevant information needed to continue operations through the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. Customs and Border Protection this week launched a new resource on its website dealing specifically with the most recent trade-related updates and official messaging about the impacts of COVID-19.
COVID-19 Updates and Announcements
Information found at the new website includes Federal Register Notices and Cargo Systems Messaging Service communications related to COVID-19, as well as updates and announcements in trade programs and cargo security.
Additionally, as many other departments and agencies are involved with facilitating international trade, the links to the COVID-19 response websites of partner government entities will also be included.
CBP indicates that regular updates to the site will be made to reflect the most current information available.
COVID-19 Cargo Resolution Team
CBP also announced this week that the agency’s Pharmaceuticals, Health and Chemical Center of Excellence and Expertise has established a new COVID-19 Cargo Resolution Team tasked with coordinating inquiries about the import of medical supplies and personal protective equipment. CBP states the new multidisciplinary team will “triage” incoming questions, coordinate with affected ports, and respond directly as appropriate.
The CCRT can be contacted by email at COVID19_RELIEF_IMPORTS@cbp.dhs.gov.
Types of inquires that should be directed to this address include:
- Facilitation requests from other government agencies and private industry
- General inquiries regarding the import of certain medical instruments of export
To help CBP in expediting the release of COVID-19 relief materials, inquires should include as much data about the shipment as possible. Ideally, this will include the following:
- Shipment information: manifest or air waybill numbers, tracking numbers, entry numbers, mode of transport information
- Conveyance information: carrier name, mode of transportation, flight number, vessel/voyage number, port of arrival, port of entry
- Cargo description: complete description of the goods being shipped
- Country information: country of manufacture, country of export
- Parties involved: names and locations of manufacturers, shippers, importers, and consignees
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