US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently announced that effective May 17, 2015, exporters will become eligible to participate in the Customs-Trade Partnership against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program. The program, which since its inception a decade ago has applied solely to cargo security standards for certified importers, aims to support export growth and increase the competitiveness of the US business community. The export program’s initial focus will be to develop reciprocal agreements with foreign customs administrations that have signed a bilateral Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) with CBP. In addition, the program will establish unified and sustainable global security partnerships that prioritize export shipments, heighten facilitation between mutually recognized customs partners, provide access to C-TPAT sponsored security seminars, and reduce examinations for exporters.
CBP previously advised the following C-TPAT qualifications for exporters:
- Be an active US exporter (exporting out of the US)
- Have a business office staffed in the US
- Have an Employer Identification Number (EIN) or Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS) number
- Have a documented export security program
- Commit to maintaining the C-TPAT supply chain security criteria
- Create/provide a security profile to CBP outlining internal policies to satisfy C-TPAT security criteria
- Have an acceptable level of compliance for export reporting for the last twelve months
Additional information regarding C-TPAT and access to the Exporter application is available on the Cargo Security and Examinations subsection of the CBP website.