CBP Opens Final Three Centers of Excellence and Expertise
U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced June 3 the opening of the final three Centers of Excellence and Expertise, bringing to ten the number of CEEs now in operation around the country. The Agriculture & Prepared Products CEE is in Miami, the Apparel, Footwear & Textiles CEE is in San Francisco, and the Consumer Products & Mass Merchandising CEE is in Atlanta. CEEs already in operation include Automotive & Aerospace in Detroit, Base Metals in Chicago, Electronics in Los Angeles, Industrial & Manufacturing Materials in Buffalo, Machinery in Laredo, Petroleum, Natural Gas & Minerals in Houston, and Pharmaceuticals, Health & Chemicals in New York.
CBP is currently conducting a general test of the CEEs and its goal is to incrementally transition the operational trade functions that traditionally reside with the ports of entry until they reside entirely with the CEEs. By focusing on industry-specific issues and providing tailored support for participating importers, CBP is seeking to facilitate trade, reduce transaction costs, increase compliance with applicable import laws, and achieve uniformity of treatment at ports of entry. CBP believes that providing broad decision-making authority to the CEEs for entry processing issues will better enable them to achieve these goals and is conducting the CEE test to determine if that is true.