Customs Minister Maurice Williamson today announced an improvement to the existing Mutual Recognition Arrangement between New Zealand Customs and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
“This improvement is evidence of the Government’s commitment to providing high quality, tangible benefits for local exporters,” Mr Williamson said.
The improvement was finalised in an exchange of letters in Washington DC between New Zealand Ambassador Mike Moore and the Commissioner U.S. CBP, Alan Bersin on Friday (Washington DC time).
The improvement is expected to facilitate the processing of shipments by exporters who are members of New Zealand’s Secure Exports Scheme (SES). Under the existing Mutual Recognition Arrangement, SES goods are generally already assessed as low risk. However, this improvement means that SES goods are now 3.5 times less likely to be examined for security purposes by U.S. CBP.
SES members should generally have greater certainty about the movement of their goods through the United States border and quicker access to the United States market.
“No other country has this benefit to the extent of New Zealand which provides a market advantage for exporters who elect to be members of this world leading scheme,” Mr Williamson said.
“It is an excellent demonstration of how industry can benefit from joining with customs administrations to secure international supply chains,” he said.
More information on the voluntary Secure Exports Scheme can be found on at http://www.customs.govt.nz/exporters/Secure+Exports+Scheme.htm