Overweight Permits To Fight Illicit Trade?


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Luis Ramirez, president of Phoenix-based Ramirez Advisors Inter-National, LLC, discusses how innovative and cooperative approaches lead to successful solutions.

“Illicit trade, which includes counterfeiting, smuggling, organized retail theft, human trafficking and the drug trade, affects every state, including Arizona. This illegal activity is a real threat to our local communities given our proximity to the international border with Mexico. But luckily in Arizona, we have implemented innovative international shipping polices that not only alleviate border congestion and expedite global trade, but also keep this type of criminal activity at bay.”

“In the security business, it is understood that cargo at rest is cargo at risk. Forcing the truck to stop and be opened, the cargo handled is simply an invitation for something to be inserted into that truck. Thus, if you load the truck at its origin at an additional 10,800 pounds, you eliminate the need for the additional stop before it arrives at the border.”

“This approach has resulted in various other programs, such as Unified Cargo Processing (UCP) at ports of entry. This is a simple concept that puts both U.S. and Mexican customs officials side-by-side to inspect a truck with one stop. The results have been spectacular. There is enhanced security as one official watches the other. It has also resulted in closer working relationships that promote collaboration and coordination.”

“This type of innovation is a great example of how collaboration between local communities, business leaders, and law enforcement can help solve local challenges.”

“There is no doubt that enforcement authorities require major investments in inspection facilities, technology and staffing to do their job more effectively and efficiently. But taking the time to look at the process and looking for ways to improve it is referred to as force-multipliers. The gains can be immediate, translate into increased profits for companies, but perhaps more importantly, create a more secure international supply chain.”

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