New Broker-Known Importer Program Launched
U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced May 13 the implementation of the Broker-Known Importer Program. According to the National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America, which developed the BKIP concept, its purpose is to establish a process whereby licensed, permitted U.S. customs brokers can voluntarily identify to CBP through a specific indicator importers that are exercising reasonable care in connection with their import related activities but may or may not qualify for or otherwise choose to participate in programs like Importer Self-Assessment or Trusted Trader. CBP states that functionality allowing brokers to flag known importer participants by transmitting the BKIP indicator in the Automated Commercial Environment has been deployed.
CBP indicates that BKIP will provide two primary benefits. One is to enhance communication between brokers and importers by creating a framework whereby they can discuss in greater depth the importer’s trade activities in the context of import regulations. Importers will benefit from increased compliance understanding and improved entry accuracy, while brokers may discover additional business opportunities. The second is that because the BKIP indicator will factor into CBP’s cargo risk segmentation, importers may benefit from improved cargo targeting by CBP at the time of arrival.
NCBFAA has developed a questionnaire that brokers can use to conduct a review enabling them to verify the importer’s identity and confirm the importer’s understanding of its compliance obligations in areas such as entry declarations, antidumping and countervailing duties, intellectual property rights, valuation and preference programs. This review could also address documentation and information requirements for customs clearance, recordkeeping and drawback. It is anticipated that this review will be repeated periodically.