Even though U.S. Customs
recently reported that they have seized more than $300 million in product from 18,000 trade enforcement actions, Customs cannot be everywhere and surely does not catch every instance of intellectual property rights infringement
, tariff avoidance, or quota violations. Responsible members of the trade community must proactively monitor their industries and products with care and accuracy.
U.S. Customs has created a website that makes it possible to anonymously report potential trade violations online or through a toll free number. Visit https://apps.cbp.gov/eallegations
to read more about how Customs processes these requests or call 1-800-BE-ALERT (800-232-5378).
To report violations, it is important to have evidence showing quantitative analysis of the trade realities on the ground. Trade data, both U.S. Customs and U.S. Census information, is the essential source for doing IPR investigations, giving insights into how competitors are declaring their goods, and understanding current quota fulfillment within days of products entering the country. These are proactive activities that can have an impact on your company’s bottom line in a number of ways:
- Reporting counterfeiters could mean delivering thousands or potentially millions to the reporter of the violations. The Stop Counterfeiting in Manufactured Goods Act of 2006 allows for companies that are affected by counterfeiters to receive compensation from the value of the goods seized for the violations reported to law enforcement.
- Notifying officials of possible cases of tariff avoidance could not only receive revenue in form of a reward, but also enhance current revenue streams by ensuring that companies have the same cost structures. Tariff avoidance allows the violating companies to import at a lower price and in turn undercut the true market price, giving an unfair advantage.
- Keeping track of quota fulfillment ensures that importers do not miss opportunities to import goods, but also protects the risk of paying penalties for bringing goods in over the quota. Knowing a company's place in the market makes everything from supplier contract negotiations to sales forecasting more effective and adds greatly to the value of a trade analyst.
Quotas ensure that only a specified amount of a certain type of product can enter the United States for a year or other time frame. A quota may be specific to one country or may not, but still require importers and manufacturers of the goods to have an accurate understanding of where the quota stands.
Trade data makes monitoring quotas easy. U.S. Census data provides a highly accurate assessment of the quota about 6 weeks after a month ends and U.S. Customs data provides an even more detailed picture of the market. Not only does U.S. Customs data allow users to estimate quota fulfillment within days of a product's entry into the country, it provides users with a clear understanding of the market share of specific of importers for the quota.
The U.S. government has made it easy for parties to report trade violations with their eAllegations
website, however it still requires a professional to find and document questionable trade practices. Zepol
provides the data needed to thoroughly investigate competitor and supplier trade activity with our U.S. Customs tool
and our U.S. Census tool