Clearit.ca's Blog on Customs Brokerage and News Updates
If you’re not growing your business – then you are losing business. Maintaining the “status quo” often hurts sales. Competitors spring up and take market share because they understand the changing market conditions. You have to adapt to survive.
As business picks up in January after the holidays come to a close, you need to take advantage of this time. January is the perfect time to review your processes and update operations.
With regards to matters of Canadian customs, here are a few quick tips that could vastly improve your value chain in the coming year:
Start with Suppliers
Trade Agreements: Trade agreements are continually updated, changed, and added on to. As well, new ones tend to pop up every year. Taking a deeper look into new agreements and changes could have an enormous benefit to your bottom line. The United States has always been Canada’s strongest partner in trade.
With similar cultures and proximity – the market has traditionally been easy for Canadian exporters to tap into. As such, the Canadian government has been working to negotiate new trade deals with our neighbor to the south and many other countries. Deals like the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership were negotiated with Canadian businesses in mind.
General Preferential Tariff (GPT): Implemented in 1974, the General Preferential Tariff was created as Canada’s tariff policy for developing nations. Initially, the GPT was used to encourage imports from numerous developing countries to help their economic growth efforts. Currently, the GPT offers duty-free and preferential duty rates to 175 designated beneficiaries on most products imported.
Supply Chain Logistics: One of the best ways to trim your costs is to review your freight lanes and carriers. Companies you’ve hired to move your product often cost you more than if you did it yourself. Make an effort to arrange freight transportation by yourself. This can increase your buying power. If you want to make your transportation budget go even further, then you should work to consolidate purchasing.
Known for quality, innovation, and purity (no knockoffs) – Canadian products are sought after worldwide. One of the best demographics markets for products from Canada is the European Union. Due to increased service on a number of ocean lanes and CETA – connecting with and selling to European customers should be easier than ever in the coming years.
Constant Eyes on Compliance
Importers and exporters all over the world continually forget or lose focus on one central area of their business – trade compliance. Canadian companies that have gone global are no different. International trade is a privilege that allows businesses to generate money, but the only way to stay in the game is to stay ahead of compliance. Make sure you have a trade compliance program in place that ensures your business stays ahead of the curve.
Part of your trade compliance program should be a self-auditing program that reviews all the work of your international business professionals. A system of checks and balances is essential and can save your business money. If you’re unable to self-audit, then, you may need the help of a customs broker.
Customs agents help importers and exporters in Canada stay on top of compliance and regulation. Some Canadian businesses may find their international business activities simple while others may find the behavior of buyers’ complex. Customs brokers can be especially useful in some situations – handling pricing, dealing with customs, building a relationship between both parties, moving the freight, and more.
The New Year Looks Bright
By keeping an eye on compliance, reviewing suppliers, and always looking to find new customers – you can stay ahead of the curve and grow your business on an international scale. If any of the customs processes seems foreign to you, we hope you’ll reach out. Here at Clear It, we pride ourselves on knowing all the ins and outs of the Canadian customs procedure. Get in touch today by: