SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) joined more than 100 members of the local trade community on Tuesday morning to share important information at the Foreign Trade Zone Seminar, hosted by the Puerto Rico Automobile Importers Association (GUIA, for its Spanish acronym).
The annual event brought together a wide range of local stakeholders (customs brokers, importers, zone operators, etc.) that rely upon the Foreign Trade Zones program.
During the FTZ Seminar remarks were given by Mr. Ricardo Garcia GUIA President, Mr. Edward Ryan Assistant Director of Field Operations for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, and Ms. Judy Staudt Assistant Director for the Automotive & Aerospace Center for Excellence and Expertise.
“Communicating and listening to our stakeholders is key to our success,” indicated Mr. Ryan. “And that the more we can listen the better we can carry out our primary trade mission – that is protecting the health and safety of the public and facilitating the flow of legitimate trade.”
In addition, participants received an industry panel on the benefits of the FTZ Program, and also a detailed presentation from the San Juan FTZ Team on CBP’s supervision of the FTZs, Red Flags, and best practices for Zone Operators.
“We are grateful for the strong partnership we have with CBP in Puerto Rico,” stated Ricardo Garcia, GUIA President. “The automotive industry, and many other industries, in Puerto Rico rely heavily upon the FTZs as a cornerstone to the supply chain progress. As such, CBP’s plays a key part in our economic success in providing oversight to the FTZ program and this event showcases that close partnership between industry and CBP; necessary for the FTZ program’s success.”
It is the intent of the FTZ program to stimulate economic growth and development. In an expanding global marketplace there is increased competition among nations for jobs, industry and capital. The FTZ program was designed to promote American competitiveness by encouraging companies to maintain and expand their operations in the United States.
The FTZ program encourages U.S.-based operations by removing certain disincentives associated with manufacturing in the United States.