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The majority of Americans are pretty clueless when it comes to U.S. Customs regulations, but these days manufacturers are having to become virtual experts. Partly, it's because most of them have made doing business with foreign buyers and suppliers an integral part of their businesses, but it's also in response to a variety of new security measures enacted in the post-9/11 world.
Today, manufacturers involved in importing or exporting goods regularly find themselves under a microscope, subject to a laundry list of different rules and regulations to comply with federal law. According to Trudi West, director of global trade compliance for Hitachi Data Systems Corp., a manufacturer of data storage systems, compliance functions seem to reach new levels of complexity every year.
"We're dealing with issues that are very different than they were just a few years ago," notes West. "Regulations that had been clearly defined in black and white are now in much more of a grey area. And with more responsibility on companies to self-police, everyone needs to make sure they have a squeaky-clean program if the government ever decides to perform an audit, which are also a lot more common."
Source: Industry Week, http://industryweek.com
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