WASHINGTON — U.S. Customs Service Commissioner Robert Bonner said Monday that more than 400 U.S. companies have agreed to step up dramatically the security measures they take with their cargo overseas, to avoid the possibility of terrorists using...
WASHINGTON — U.S. Customs Service Commissioner Robert Bonner said Monday that more than 400 U.S. companies have agreed to step up dramatically the security measures they take with their cargo overseas, to avoid the possibility of terrorists using shipping containers to smuggle weapons or operatives into the U.S.This is part of the Customs’ post-Sept. 11 campaign to overhaul international cargo security to avoid the dire economic consequences that would result if, even for a short time, the U.S. had to shut its ports to all goods because of a terrorist attack."The problem is there is virtually no security in our primary system of global trade," Bonner said in a speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. "We don’t want to wait for the nuke-in-the-box."He said terrorists’ goals were "to attack not just the World Trade Center but world trade."In his progress report Monday, Bonner said the number of corporations, ocean carriers, customs brokers and freight forwarders participating in an initiative dubbed Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism has mushroomed.Bonner said 300 of the companies that have signed up are importers, who collectively represent about 15 to 20 percent of all cargo container shipments to the U.S.The goal is to have the top 1,000 importers — who ship about 61 percent of all cargo to the U.S. — participate, he said.The plan requires companies to improve the security of their shipments and undertake security reviews throughout the supply chain, from factories to the docks where containers are loaded onto ships.In exchange, companies will receive the "fast lane" entry through border crossings and seaports. Customs officials have not yet specified what that will mean.Seven charter members, including Target Corp., Sara Lee Corp., Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp., stepped up to the plate in January to participate.Most of the largest U.S. retailers have had their security plans approved, said Erik Autor, vice president of international trade and general counsel at the National Retail Federation, who noted that most large retailers already had security systems in place to deter theft.But he said smaller retailers need more guidance on what to submit in their applications.In his speech, Bonner also said six of the world’s top 20 ports have agreed to participate in his Container Security Initiative, in which cargo containers are to be scrutinized by foreign and U.S. Customs officials in foreign ports before being shipped to the U.S.Ports in Rotterdam, The Netherlands; Antwerp, Belgium; Le Havre, France; Hamburg and Bremerhaven, Germany, and Singapore have agreed to implement CSI, Bonner said.Bonner said the first team of U.S. Customs officers to be assigned to work overseas reported for duty Monday in Rotterdam. He said he expects CSI to be fully operational in that port by Sept. 2, with the other five ports coming online over the next few months.It is the first time in the 213-year history of the Customs that inspectors will be assigned outside of North America to target and screen cargo before being shipped to the U.S.Since approximately 68 percent of the 5.7 million sea containers entering the U.S. annually arrive from 20 foreign seaports, Customs is initially focusing on these megaports as choke points in the global trading system.The ports of Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore are the three busiest processing U.S.-bound goods and are key embarkation points for apparel and textile shipments.Bonner said he is "cautiously optimistic" that Hong Kong authorities will join the CSI.Changes are also in store for cargo manifests, Bonner said.In the proposed Customs regulations, companies will be required to submit advanced cargo manifest information to Customs 24 hours prior to loading at foreign ports.Bonner said he expects to issue a final regulation in two to three weeks after considering comments from the trade.
“I grew up in New York but I hadn’t really experienced the city in any type of touristy way…This was probably the first museum I really explored and took the time to see,” said @haileybaldwin of the @whitneymuseum. On Tuesday night, Baldwin was joined by Jemima Kirke and more at the annual Whitney Museum Gala and Studio Party, which honored Lorna Simpson, Joanne Leonhardt Cassullo and Beth Rudin DeWoody. See more photos on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
Displayed starting this week at the @fashiontextilemuseum: An exhibition on designer @orlakiely titled “Orla Kiely: A Life in Pattern,” which spans two decades and contains more than 150 pieces. “I want people to come away loving pattern and print. It’s something that makes you feel so good,” said the designer during a preview of the exhibit. Also on show are mood boards, samples, sketches and more. Head to WWD.com to see more photos. #wwdfashion
Exclusive: @dsquared2 signs fragrance licensing agreement with Euroitalia, with the first effort of the new partnership being unveiled in September. The brand will launch two scents – one for men and one for women – in Italy. Read our interview with designer Dean and Dan Caten on WWD.com. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: @zefashioninsider)
@louisvuitton has officially renewed Nicolas Ghesquière’s contract as artistic director of women's collections. "I am very pleased to open the next chapter of the story I started with Louis Vuitton almost 5 years ago," said Ghesquière, who first signed on to design the French luxury brand's women's line in 2013. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
“I learned then and there that I had to figure out a way in life to maintain and preserve my sense of pride when I felt good about what I did or what I represented or created,” said @saintrecords on how being bullied for wearing capri pants inspired her to be the artist she is today. Knowles was at the 70th Parsons Benefit last night where she outbid the room for a Dapper Dan customized @gucci experience. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
“There’s this amazing braintrust of people who know the whole universe so well. So we talked to them and they gave us more input,” said actor Alden Ehrenreich on playing the young Han Solo in “Solo: A Star Wars Story.” The cast was at NYC’s SVA Theatre last night for an advanced screening of the film, which hits theaters this week. #wwdeye #starwars #hansolo (📷: @aurorarosedecrosta)
@asaprocky spent nearly two hours in a Plexiglas box Sunday night at @sothebys putting himself through a series of “tests” to demonstrate the process of completing his new album called “Testing.” Get all the details and see all the pictures on WWD.com. #wwdeye
“I’ve struggled my whole life to find a bathing suit that fits me that doesn’t look like a maternity bra. I’m proud of the line because it’s an accurate representation of me rather than me putting on someone else’s clothes,” says @atlantabean of her swimwear collaboration with @piaarrobio, LPA X ATL. The two decided on a swimwear collab and increased the industry standard size for the pieces. Read more about the line — and our interview with de Cadenet Taylor and Arrobio — on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Dan Doperalski)