Import Export Customs Compliance and Trade News

Trade and customs compliance and regulation news that affect import, export, transportation, logistics, and supply-chain industry and how you do business.

Can artificial intelligence make supply chains sustainable?

Can artificial intelligence make supply chains sustainable?
World Economic Forum in snowy Davos, Switzerland, brought a blizzard of proclamations about the disruptive impact of artificial intelligence, along with an avalanche of debate over its job-killing potential. The good news for us humans is that the current generation of AI technologies being used to automate data collection and processing — such as machine-learning software that amasses more expertise as it analyzes data or neural networks modeled after the human brain — are more likely to augment the human workforce rather than replace it. At least for now.  Indeed, almost two-thirds of the business executives responding to a survey released last week by IT consulting firm Infosys (PDF) said they believed AI would "bring out the best in their organization’s people." The rise of AI, the Infosys poll respondents suggest, will place a premium on skills such as creativity and logical reasoning. Noted IBM chairwoman and CEO Ginni Rometty, in remarks Wednesday at Davos,...
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A tale of two ports: Oakland and Long Beach are looking strong

A tale of two ports: Oakland and Long Beach are looking strong
2016 was a rocky year for both Pacific Rim gateways, but this year looks promising, indeed.  Transpacific shippers and other transport stakeholders were given briefings recently by the ports of Oakland and Long Beach to reassure them that they’d be competitive in 2017 and beyond. For Oakland, just to say that a year ago might have been a stretch. As our readers may recall, the port began 2016 with a daunting challenge when the port’s second-largest terminal – the Outer-Harbor Terminal – declared bankruptcy and abruptly left town. Without the joint venture operated by Ports America and Mediterranean Shipping Co., it was left to the International Terminal to absorb more than 90 percent of the Outer Harbor business. Chris Lytle, Oakland’s executive director was left at the time with the unenviable task of explaining the problem at his annual “State of the Port Address. He put on a brave face, of...
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Supply Chain May Be a Numbers Game, But It's Still Played by People

Supply Chain May Be a Numbers Game, But It's Still Played by People
Supply-chain management today is very much a game of numbers. But the risk of getting lost in the math is real. It's all about analytics - the method by which managers crunch an increasingly vast universe of numbers to reach key decisions on procurement, production, inventory and sales. In the era of Big Data, it's tempting to assume that you can't have too much information. The problem is making sense of it all — separating the signal from the noise. To the huge amounts of data flowing in from suppliers, customers and other supply-chain partners, add all the “unstructured” input from social media. Suddenly that wealth of information starts looking like a curse instead of a blessing. A good start to navigating the chaos is to identify which decisions you’re trying to improve. Are you trying to make it faster, better, more accurate? The goal will often determine the right template...
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NAFTA 2.0 - Modernizing the Free Trade Agreement

NAFTA 2.0 - Modernizing the Free Trade Agreement
[Note: This blog posting is from an original post on LinkedIn found here] Following the inauguration of Donald J. Trump as President of the United States, our country’s trade agreements and trade policies face an uncertain future. Elected, in part, on a platform of trade reform and promises to bring manufacturing jobs back to the United States, President Trump has wasted little time in making his vision a reality. On his first week in office, Trump formally abandoned the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Fears that the TPP could lead to further outsourcing of US-based manufacturing jobs to lower-wage countries led to its distrust by politicians on both sides of the aisle. Throughout the campaign, opposition to the agreement became a key part of President Trump’s message, eventually abandoning the TPP January 23rd. The Trump administration has promised to reopen the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and renegotiate it in a way...
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Top 4 Issues Affecting Trucking this Year

Top 4 Issues Affecting Trucking this Year
Recently, I had the pleasure of being a guest on Dave Nemo’s Road Dog radio show. We recapped some of the big stories in trucking regulations in 2016 and discussed the issues coming up in 2017. Here are the top four issues I will be following in 2017: Change in DOT and FMCSA leadershipThis will be the number one issue I watch in 2017. I plan to follow the new leadership of the U.S. Department of Transportation by Elaine Chao as well as who she picks to head the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Will draft rules like the speed limiter rule ever see light again? What will happen with the Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) program? Infrastructure billWill there be a massive infrastructure bill in 2017 as promised by President-elect Trump? The wish list for the new session of Congress is already quite long. Will they take up a...
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