What is G:TEC & Why is it Important?

It is easy for me to get carried away with my excitement about what the NCBFAA Educational Institute (NEI) is doing for our industry:

  • increasing the level of professionalism by increasing our members’ awareness of changing rules within our daily procedures,
  • helping companies become more compliant by understanding the legal aspects of international trade,
  • providing a robust resource  to individuals who are seeking people or companies who provide International Trade Education,
  • providing certification programs which help companies identify qualified people to handle international trade transactions, and lastly,
  • providing an economical way of continuing the training of those individual to keep up with the ever changing industry rules and regulation.

We are even working closely with several universities to bring international trade education to a new generation of people to satisfy the growth of our industry.

Now, we have taken the next step.  It is with great pleasure that I discuss our latest venture: our first annual Global Trade Educational Conference (G:TEC).

GTEC Postcard10

Since this is a new endeavor, I would not be surprised if some of you are wondering “What could this conference offer me?” I would like to take this time to give you a greater understanding of what you can expect from this event.

As the title states, we are all about international trade education. In that vein, we are bringing together industry experts from the private sector (attorneys, consultants and actual practitioners within our industry) as well as the public sector (people from government agencies that oversee industry-related regulations) to share some of the best practices they have observed in our industry.  We expect everyone to leave this conference with ideas and tools which will help them improve the quality and efficiency of their daily work.

G:TEC will also promote an environment for people to openly share their experiences and seek needed advice by offering opportunities for our attendees to network with their industry counterparts.

Finally, this conference is not catered towards a specific demographic of the international trade industry but to all global trade professionals.  We will have attendees from the import and export community as well as service providers such as Customs Brokers, Freight Forwarders, Insurance Companies and Logistics Companies.  This blend will promote a better understanding of what each participant in our industry deals with during the life of an international trade transaction.

G:TEC will also offer other amenities such as a fantastic venue at the Hyatt Regency Schaumburg, Chicago, a network reception, and an open forum to seek feedback from you to share what your global logistics education needs are.  We will also be exploring all the benefits of our new Learning Management System scheduled for launch this April.  We offer all this at reasonable costs as it is important to us that we make such educational opportunities as affordable as possible.

My level of excitement is so high I could continue to write about all the wonderful happenings in the NEI, but I will keep this short.  I invite you to take advantage of this opportunity and become part of the beginning of what I am sure will be an excellent tradition in global logistics education. 

See you this August in Chicago!

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Feliz Halloween de América del Sur!

Happy Halloween from South America!

This past week, I was pleased to attend the Asociacion De Agentes Prof De Aduana De Las Americas (ASAPRA) Conference in beautiful Uruguay.  I cannot begin to articulate the honor of representing the NCBFAA, NEI, and the United States!

So what is ASAPRA?  According to their website (translated):

“ASAPRA is an international private corporation, nonprofit organization, which was founded in Vina del Mar, Chile, in 1969, in order to integrate into a single entity to the chambers, federations, associations and unions Agents, Brokers and / or Customs Brokers in Latin America, Spain and Portugal. The Customs Agents, thus represented by ASAPRA, now reaching more than 25,000 professionals located in different countries of Latin America.”

Alfonso Rojas, ASAPRA President at opening session of ASAPRA Conference in Uraguay.

Alfonso Rojas, ASAPRA President at opening session of ASAPRA Conference in Uraguay.

In a nutshell, ASAPRA exists to “study the problems related to the exercise of the activity of customs agents and foster solutions” in South America.  In many countries that depend greatly on foreign trade, the value of customs brokerage and exporting continues to be in high demand.

With much of the U.S. efforts focused on Asia with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), we must never forget our trade partners down South.  Often, we are so focused on the issues as customs brokers here in the States that we forget trade professionals in other countries face their own problems.  In fact, it’s helpful to hear the stories of our foreign counterparts and learn from their experiences.  Many of these relationships with our South American allies are prosperous thanks to the trade agreements forged, and the diligence of the global logistics professionals working with one another internationally.  I am confident that continuing dialogue and trade between our continents will result in a better global economy and a safer world for you and your children to spend a wonderful Halloween in!

Happy Trick-or-Treating and don’t forget to always be proud of your profession!

WESCCON 2014

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of attending and exhibiting at the 2014 Western Cargo Conference (WESCCON) in beautiful Coronado, California.   The conference is hosted by the Pacific Coast Council of Customs Brokers & Freight Forwarders Associations, Inc. (PCC) which includes numerous associations and organizations in global logistics.  The conference featured outstanding speakers and topics, many ongoing while others are new.   Some topics that were highlighted were:

  • Single Window
  • CBP Export Enforcement
  • FDA & PGA’s within ACE
  • eBonds for Imports
  • and more!

The NEI was not only there to educate the attendees about its extensive programs but was also there to gather information to deliver back to our greater audience.  We were proud to publish our “From the Field” event recaps of the conference, summarizing on notable discussions and sharing highlights from the conference.   By doing so, we were able to bring the conference to you:

Day 1
Day 2

This type of event allows people to be up to date on the ever changing rules under which we work and this being the principal mission of the NCBFAA Educational Institute we would like to congratulate the PCC for bringing together such well informed people not only form the private sector but the public sector as well  to present such an impressive amount material related to the changes in international trade rules.

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