Original Press Release
NAM Welcomes Improvements In Potentially Costly Customs Rule
Press release date: November 24, 2008
"NAM's Nearly Year-Long Struggle for Realism Paid Off," Says Engler
WASHINGTON, D.C., November 24, 2008 -- The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) today welcomed release of a significantly-improved customs rule known as "10+2" by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) after substantial modifications were made in a lengthy interagency process.
It's called the 10+2 rule because it requires importers to submit 10 types of information about what they are importing, and requires two new types of information from shipping companies. As originally written, the rule would have required U.S. manufacturers to submit the 10 new data elements 24 hours prior to loading a shipping container at a foreign port - even though the data are not available that early.
"The 10+2 Rule, as originally drafted, would have cost U.S. manufacturers as uch as $20 billion annually, created huge delays and missed shipments in the global supply chain, risked shutting down U.S. production lines and actually worsened security by increasing the amount of time containers sat around available for tampering at foreign ports," said NAM President John Engler.
"The NAM was proud to lead the industry effort to modify the 10+2 rule by working virtually on a daily basis with the Administration and the Congress to obtain a rule that protects the national security of the United States while simultaneously allowing legitimate trade to move freely," said Engler.
"We are very pleased that, after nearly a year of the NAM's unrelenting effort, a realistic assessment of the rule was made under the auspices of the White House's Office of Management and Budget (OMB)," Said Engler. "Congress, and the Departments of Commerce, State, Treasury, and Homeland Security, the Small Business Administration and the U.S. Trade Representative listened carefully to what our member companies told them."
The rule establishes an interim six month test of how the data elements can be provided, and allows U.S. manufacturers to provide the most difficult data elements on a "best available" status. "Before the NAM became involved on the 10+2 rule, everybody told us that it was a done deal and changes were not possible," said Engler. CBP's interpretation of the data flexibilities is critical and we will watch carefully how the agreed upon modifications are implemented.
"While the rule is substantially changed, work still has to be done to create a final rule that works for both national security and U.S. manufacturers," said Engler. "Even though the modifications alleviate onerous burdens, some serious problems still have not been corrected in the interim rule published today."
"We look forward to building upon the cooperative environment established between the government and industry to keep America safe as we continue our work on 10+2," said Engler. The NAM is grateful to the Congress and the agencies for their efforts to seek the right balance between national security and trade facilitation.
"Manufactured goods comprise about 90 percent of U.S. merchandise trade, and the NAM will be at the center of working with companies and the incoming Administration to further improve the rule to lessen trade and production disruptions while still providing the enhanced security we all want," Engler said.
For more information on the NAM's 10+2 effort visit: http://nam.org/PolicyIssueInformation/InternationalEconomicAffairsPolicy/Trade%20Toolkit.aspx.
The National Association of Manufacturers is the nation's largest industrial trade association, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the NAM has 11 additional offices across the country. Visit the NAM's award-winning web site at www.nam.org for more information about manufacturing and the economy.
HANK COX (202) 637-3090