Excerpt from Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report | Friday, May 30, 2014
The Trusted Trader program seeks to expand the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism, an initiative launched in 2001 to ensure the safety of imported goods, into a broader authorized economic operator-type program by unifying it with the Importer Self-Assessment program, which focuses on compliance with traditional customs issues such as classification, valuation, etc. CBP intends this change to be a step toward its long-term goal of a holistic, integrated trusted trader program across U.S. government agencies and believes it will also create an opportunity to enhance existing and future mutual recognition arrangements with foreign trading partners.
The Trusted Trader pilot is expected to have three phases, the first of which will combine CTPAT and ISA application, review, validations and vetting. A senior CBP official recently said the agency is looking to run the first phase with three to four companies for 18 months. While this official indicated that ISA could eventually be discontinued in favor of the Trusted Trader program, other officials have emphasized that the Trusted Trader program would have no effect on CTPAT or its benefits.
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