U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) opened its twelfth annual East Coast Trade Symposium today in Washington D.C. Originally scheduled to take place last month, Hurricane Sandy blew the event right off of the October calendar and into November. The annual meeting is a two-day symposium that presents panel discussions with members from the trade community, CBP personnel and representatives from other governmental agencies. The panels address a broad range of topics from global supply chain security to the role of the broker to the various programs implemented by CBP.
Today, CBP Deputy Commissioner David Aguilar announced the expansion of the Centers of Excellence and Expertise (CEE); creating six new centers in 2013. If you recall, in May we discussed these Centers of Excellence and Expertise in “`Tailor-Made Trade': Centers of Excellence and Expertise“. The six new CEEs to be established in FY 2013 are:
- Agriculture & Prepared Products: Miami, FL
- Apparel, Footwear & Textiles: San Francisco, CA
- Base Metals: Chicago, IL
- Consumer Products & Mass Merchandising: Atlanta, GA
- Industrial & Manufacturing Materials: Buffalo, NY
- Machinery: Laredo, TX
Currently, CBP has established CEEs in:
- Electronics: Long Beach, CA
- Pharmaceuticals, Health & Chemicals: New York, NY
- Automotive & Aerospace: Detroit, MI
- Petroleum, Natural Gas & Minerals: Houston, TX
The CEEs were developed to address the issues of specified industries and to provide a single point of contact for questions and/or concerns related to that industry. The CEEs would empower CBP and would allow the agency to “effectively partner with industry to facilitate international trade through U.S. ports of entry.” It is expected that the CEEs will lower the cost of doing business for the trade, provide greater consistency and predictability, enhance CBP’s enforcement efforts and serve as a resource to the broader trade community and CBP’s agency partners.