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US, Singapore reach deal for trusted trader programs

US, Singapore reach deal for trusted trader programs

SINGAPORE: U.S and Singapore shippers and transportation providers signed two major agreements to ensure the faster cargo processing and increased transportation between the two countries.

U.S. Customs Border and Protection Commissioner signed a U.S.– Singapore Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement and a Mutual Recognition Arrangement, providing mutual recognition of the U.S. Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism program and Singapore’s Customs’ Secure Trade (STC) Partnership. The U.S. now has mutual recognition agreements with 72 countries.

“The signing of the MRA and CMAA between the U.S. and Singapore demonstrates the partnership and commitment of each country to combating customs fraud and to a secure global supply chain,” U.S. Customs Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske said in a statement.

Trusted trader programs reward users that can show customs agencies that their supply chains are secured with faster clearance. As a result, the agencies can focus its limited resources on targeting high-risk shipments.

But many C-TPAT members privately grumble that the trusted trader doesn’t provide enough tangible benefits. A new initiative integrating C-TPAT and Importer Self Assessment is seen as an effort to give U.S. Customs’ trusted trader programs some added heft. The new program, known as Trusted Trader, includes the additional perks of reduced inspections from the Food and Drug Administration and Consumer Product Safety Commission.