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Chairman Brady Announces Hearing on Supporting Economic Growth and Job Creation through Customs Trade Modernization, Facilitation, and Enforcement
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) today announced a Subcommittee hearing to review customs operations administered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The hearing will focus on efforts to enhance economic growth and job creation by facilitating legitimate trade, modernizing customs procedures, and enforcing U.S. Customs and trade laws. The hearing will help the Committee develop customs reauthorization legislation. The hearing will take place on Thursday, May 17, 2012, in the main Committee hearing room, 1100 Longworth House Office Building, beginning at 10:00 a.m.
In view of the limited time available to hear witnesses, oral testimony at this hearing will be heard from invited witnesses only. However, any individual or organization not scheduled for an oral appearance may submit a written statement for consideration by the subcommittee and for inclusion in the printed record of the hearing.
The Committee last conducted a comprehensive review of the structure and resources of CBP and ICE from a commercial operations and customs enforcement perspective in May 2010. Since that time, there has been growing concern that, in particular, existing efforts to modernize trade functions, facilitate legitimate trade, and enforce customs laws may not be keeping pace with the growing volumes of trade.
CBP has been implementing several programs to automate trade, improve compliance, and identify shipments that violate U.S. laws. In addition, in working with CBP, the trade community has made large investments in international supply chains through advance submissions of cargo data and “partnership” programs between government and business. This hearing will explore how these enhanced targeting and screening tools can be improved to reduce costs, smooth movements of legitimate trade by trusted partners, and increase compliance with the customs and trade laws of the United States.
With respect to enforcement of traditional customs laws and revenue collection, more enforcement-related training and other measures may be needed to ensure CBP can effectively address fraudulent practices that circumvent U.S. laws, including in the areas of antidumping and countervailing duty collection, intellectual property rights enforcement, and textile enforcement. This hearing will explore how CBP manages its resources and whether any structural or other changes are needed to ensure that U.S. customs and trade laws are enforced.
In announcing this hearing, Chairman Brady said, “Trade is vital to our economic engine, creating jobs and lifting wages here at home. Today, more than 50 million U.S. workers are employed by companies that engage in international trade, and U.S. trade represents over 30 percent of U.S. GDP. Streamlining legitimate trade is an essential component to our competitiveness in the global marketplace. This hearing will explore how to allocate resources and develop models so that we can move the ever-increasing volume of legitimate trade more efficiently, while effectively filtering out trade that doesn’t comply with our laws.”
To meet the challenge of effectively and efficiently processing the volume and increasing complexity of trade in the future, CBP’s structure, policies, operations, and modernization must support its trade facilitation and commercial enforcement functions. This hearing will examine the following topics:
Please Note: Any person(s) and/or organization(s) wishing to submit for the hearing record must follow the appropriate link on the hearing page of the Committee website and complete the informational forms. From the Committee homepage, http://waysandmeans.house.gov, select “Hearings”. Select the hearing for which you would like to submit, and click on the link entitled, “Click here to provide a submission for the record.” Once you have followed the online instructions, submit all requested information. ATTACH your submission as a Word or WordPerfect document, in compliance with the formatting requirements listed below, by close of business, Thursday, May 31, 2012. Finally, please note that due to the change in House mail policy, the U.S. Capitol Police will refuse sealed-package deliveries to all House Office Buildings. For questions, or if you encounter technical problems, please call (202) 225-1721 or (202) 225-3625.
The Committee relies on electronic submissions for printing the official hearing record. As always, submissions will be included in the record according to the discretion of the Committee. The Committee will not alter the content of your submission, but we reserve the right to format it according to our guidelines. Any submission provided to the Committee by a witness, any supplementary materials submitted for the printed record, and any written comments in response to a request for written comments must conform to the guidelines listed below. Any submission or supplementary item not in compliance with these guidelines will not be printed, but will be maintained in the Committee files for review and use by the Committee.
The Committee seeks to make its facilities accessible to persons with disabilities. If you are in need of special accommodations, please call 202-225-1721 or 202-226-3411 TTD/TTY in advance of the event (four business days notice is requested). Questions with regard to special accommodation needs in general (including availability of Committee materials in alternative formats) may be directed to the Committee as noted above.
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