UK freight forwarders expressed concern they have been overlooked in the recently implemented mutual recognition by the European Union and the U.S. of their trade security programs.
The British International Freight Association said it welcomed the agreement over the United States’ Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism program and the EU’s Authorized Economic Operator system.
But “we are disappointed that freight forwarders and customs brokers which are AEO-accredited will not benefit from the reduced risk scores under the Mutual Recognition Agreement,” said BIFA Director General Peter Quantrill.
The reduced risk scores benefit only applies to EU exporters and manufacturers that are AEO-accredited, BIFA said.
“It is clear that an AEO-credited freight forwarder might only benefit indirectly from a reduced risk score if the manufacturer/exporter of the goods that are exported is an AEO,” Quantrill said.
“It is extremely disappointing that the efforts of our members to improve supply chain security and customs compliance are not recognized by EU and US regulators, who have overlooked the sector’s efforts to support their trade security concerns.”
The final phase of the mutual recognition agreement signed in early February provides reciprocal benefits to C-TPAT members when exporting to the 27-nation European Union.
The benefits, which also include fewer exams when shipping cargo, were provided to members exporting into the U.S. in Phase 1 of the agreement, which was implemented in July 2012.