Shapiro Meets with Azerbaijani State Customs Committee to Share C-TPAT Best Practices

Shapiro, a 98-year-old logistics leader, hosted members of the Azerbaijan State Customs Committee in its Baltimore headquarters to share information and best practices on the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program.

Shapiro, a Baltimore-based 98-year old Customhouse broker and international freight forwarder, was invited by the U.S. State Department to meet with Azerbaijani State Customs Committee members on February 10, 2014, to discuss the United States Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program.  The Azerbaijani committee included the Deputy Head of Azerbaijan State Customs Committee, Assistant to Deputy Head, Chief of Investigations Section Anti-Smuggling Department, Chief of Astara Customs Anti-Smuggling Department, and Head of Investigations Department, in addition to an interpreter and two representatives from the U.S. Embassy in Baku, the capital and largest city of Azerbaijan.

The U.S. C-TPAT program was launched November of 2001, in the aftermath of the September 11th tragedy.  The program’s goal is to facilitate the flow of legitimate trade and travel, while preventing terrorists and terrorist weapons from entering the United States.  The intense certification process is completely voluntary and provides many added benefits to an importer’s supply chain such as reduced cargo examinations, which increases the predictability of lead times and order tracking.

Shapiro’s Director of Compliance, Jane Taeger, led the meeting and shared information on C-TPAT’s history, membership statistics, benefits, requirements, and certification/validation processes.  The goal of the Azerbaijan State Customs Committee was to explore the C-TPAT program as it is considering implementing a similar cargo security program.  This is the second time Shapiro has been invited to assist foreign Customs committees; in the Fall of 2008, Shapiro met with the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) for a similar meeting.  Shapiro is able to offer insight on the C-TPAT program from many different perspectives as it is a certified and validated member of the program as a Customs broker and NVOCC, in addition to being a provider of C-TPAT consultative services, including C-TPAT application and validation assistance, C-TPAT training, and C-TPAT program assessments.

“Shapiro is deeply honored to have been selected by the State Department to share our perspectives on C-TPAT with Azerbaijani Customs,” says Taeger.  “This exchange of ideas can only help to strengthen global cargo security.”

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