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Trade Compliance Measurement (TCM) Program Overview

The Trade Compliance Measurement (TCM) program is a primary method by which U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) measures risk in the areas of trade compliance, and revenue collection. CBP is mandated to provide an annual report on the status of trade compliance through the Customs Modernization Act (Mod Act), included as part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Implementation Act (Public Law 103-182). In response to these requirements, CBP has relied on the TCM program to provide an objective status of trade compliance on an annual basis since 1995.

The TCM program is also a key performance indicator used to determine if CBP's internal controls are operating effectively as they pertain to ensuring compliance with laws and regulations. TCM is intended to provide an indication of how compliant the importer universe is based on a random sample and statistical weighting of all import transactions. CBP utilizes the CM program to measure the effectiveness of its control mechanisms currently in place and the execution in collecting revenue rightfully due.

CBP uses a stratified random sampling methodology based on security risk, workload characteristics, and past compliant history, to name a few.

CBP conducts regular data quality reviews to ensure accuracy in findings and management oversight for validation purpose. As a direct result of accurately collecting TCM data and using it for operational decision-making, CBP fulfills some of its responsibilities under the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA), which provides Congress with accurate measures of work performed, the cost of that work, and the benefit to the public, as well as monitoring of CBP trade partners' informed compliance activities via Account Management program.