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Intelligence: How To Stay "Always in the Know"

Customs Professionals must constantly stay up-to-date with ever-changing customs, export control & sanctions laws and regulations. We explore your options.


I Introduction

II Why You Must Stay Always Up To Date

III The problems of non-compliance due to not monitoring laws and regulations

IV How Customs Manager INFO can help you + no-cost steps you can take right now to stay updated

V Conclusion

I Introduction

As long as your business runs smoothly and goods are imported and exported without any trouble, no one will question how you stay informed. However, the business will take notice if you miss an important update and your goods get stuck in customs or become worthless. Customs professionals cannot afford to wait for something bad to happen before taking a systematic approach to customs and trade intelligence. In this article, we will explore the options available for you to stay informed and explain why it is crucial for you and the business you work for.

II Why You Must Always Stay Up To Date

Why does anyone involved in customs and global trade need to pay attention to changes?

International commerce and customs-related legal difficulties may be challenging to handle. In addition, it often varies, potentially every day. Customs and international trade regulation professionals must stay current on changes in these industries, including importers, exporters, consultants, auditors, tax advisors, lawyers, customs agents, software content providers, banks, and other financial institutions. One of your responsibilities is to be up-to-date on the most recent customs and trade legislation in your country of establishment and in any foreign nation where you do business. Recent events of importance have made this a reality.

Customs and International Trade Law Developments: Why They Must Be Tracked

Due to the ever-evolving nature of international trade rules, it is crucial to keep up with customs and global trade law developments. Those that do not, need to be ready to deal with the unforeseen costs that might result from this. Lost productivity and time spent on compliance concerns and penalties levied by regulatory organisations are all expenses linked with unanticipated customs and global trade law changes. These businesses also risk losing consumers if their supplies are delayed or if the legislation undergoes any other unexpected changes. That's why it's crucial to always be on the lookout for any new rules affecting your company, so you can prepare for them in advance.

When and why do laws about customs and global trade undergo revision?

Consider the United States as an example. To guarantee a seamless transaction with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, you must comprehend the complexities of CBP rules and stay abreast of any changes. Changes in international business law and standards may be influenced by a multitude of parties. CBP, USITC, USDA-AMS, and USTR are examples of government agencies that can modify rules, guidelines, and best practices at any moment, often with extensive notice. How do you keep current? Do you daily review the Federal Register? Do you visit every day the websites of government offices and departments? If so, how long does this process take? Does it consume your time and the ever-growing "To Do" list you're attempting to complete?

Monitoring EU la is equally complex

Customs procedures inside the European Union might be just as challenging for international trade. Each day, the Official Journal is updated to include the most recent Anti-Dumping Duty rulings, reclassification guidelines, and penalty schedules. Furthermore, the EU implements the yearly tariff modification once a year. Additionally, every EU country has its own customs service. For this reason, Germany provides updated local customs regulations and instructions, while Ireland disseminates Revenue notifications. This isn't even the whole story. Modifications will be made to the main EU IT customs system as well as the additional 27 customs IT systems, one for each Member State.

International complexity

Finally, keep in mind that the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Customs Organisation (WCO), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), and others might serve as launching pads for new legislation.

III The problems of non-compliance due to not monitoring laws and regulations

Non-compliance may have a disastrous effect on a business's bottom line.

In today's global economy, staying up with the ever-changing trade legislation and customs of other countries is necessary. Importers and exporters must adhere to an ever-changing set of laws and regulations while doing international commerce.

Frequently, businesses are unprepared for rapid changes in the legislation, which may lead to violations and other problems. Those firms that have not made an effort to educate their customers about these restrictions risk having their goods and services confiscated for infractions or, even worse, being prohibited from accessing international markets.

IV Options for customs and global trade professionals.

The reality is that there is often no time to monitor law and guidance changes with the care they deserve. So it gets brushed aside, despite its relevance. If you do want to have a go, here is how you can get started:

Understand if anyone else can do the job for you for free.

It's common for companies to be part of trade associations or to subscribe to websites that provide helpful updates. For instance, the law firm Mayer Brown offers comprehensive and free insights updates covering daily EU changes, including customs and global trade. Additionally, governments and organisations providewhen free newsletters and updates. For instance, DG TAXUD has a fabulous newsletter, and Gov.UK offers a detailed overview of what has changed on every day. Global Sanctions is a website that sends alerts as soon as a change is announced, while JEBartlett provides information on US Export Controls and more. Social media has also become a great source of information recently. Finally, trade associations or membership bodies may also have an update service.

However, going through all of these emails can take hours, and many people struggle to find the time to review them all. Moreover, often, the free solutions will only provide links to official sources but offer no reflection or more profound analysis. So, you may not get an answer to the questions of what actually happened and why it matters. This is where leadership pieces by customs experts come in, which provide perspective.


The next part of the puzzle is to focus on what is essential and what is not. You may wish to limit your geographical scope, e.g. only look at updates from the UK or EU. Of course, if you are trading with the UK and the EU, you need to look at both. So, how many jurisdictions are there to monitor regularly, and which can you eliminate? Next, how many topics do you need to cover? Customs Classification only? Origin? Valuation? These are the classical fields, but what about the transit procedure or ADD/CVD? Some topics only apply if you work in a particular field or a particular types of sanctions. One popular way to bring order into all this without missing an important update is to filter by



so that you can quickly identify if you have to take action right away, or if this is just for information (and can be read later). Another way to focus is to read only the headline, which should be clear enough to help you decide if you need to read on.

EU: Union Customs Code Reform Update
Northern Ireland: Changes to GB-NI Trade

These are two examples that are clear enough to help you decide whether you should read them or not.

Questions Answered

Next, you should have a forum where you can ask or post your questions in relation to the update you have received or share your interpretation or ideas with other peers. This will deepen understanding and allow for a rich debate. So seek meetings of trade associations or fora to do just that. Online meet-ups are a popular way to ask your questions and debate important topics of the day.

V Our Recommendation

Obtaining high-quality, insightful updates can be challenging, and collecting them yourself can be time-consuming. However, we can assist you with this for a small, nominal fee. We can also offer this service to your team, ensuring that everyone is up-to-date. Our updates are categorized by "action" and "for information," and we ensure that our titles allow you to quickly scan the updates, allowing you to judge their relevance to your business. Finally, we strive to ensure that our updates are easy to understand and contain no errors. Explore our regular blog-style updates today.

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Sep 03, 2023

A great resource - fantastic to have all in one place

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