Al Gina, the new Customs and Border Protection Assistant Commissioner, International Trade, moderated the session at the CBP Trade Symposium. He talked about the Border Interagency Cooperation Council. It’s initial meeting last year dealt with Import Safety. The second meeting was earlier this year and included White House National Security staff. There have also been recent meetings with FDA about Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) implementation.
The agencies which are members of the BICC are APHIS, ATF, CPSC, EPA, FDA, FSIS, ICE, CBP, NHTSA, NMFS, Treasury, the ITDS Board Chair, and the National Security staff. There is also talk about bringing in the Coast Guard.
Right now, the BICC is focused on information sharing, including enforcement actions; document imaging with current technology; and partnership practices, including best practices and sharing trusted trader members.
Also speaking on this panel were Carol Cave (Director, Import Surveillance Division, CPSA), Pamela Mazakas (Deputy Director, Civil Enforcement, EPA) and Ted Poplawski (Special Assistant to the Director of the Division of Import Operations and Policy, FDA).
Ms. Cave mentioned the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act forced Consumer Products Safety Commission to work more closely with CBP to the benefit of both agencies. It is about one year removed from the establishment of the CTAC, the Commercial Targeting and Analysis Center for Import Safety. There they focus on issues related to who takes the lead? What is the statutory authority? What is best for the trade?
Ms. Mazakas advised EPA is at the CTAC on a pilot program which gives them access to ABI. She focused on the need for corporate compliance plans and mentioned how critical they are to companies regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency.
On behalf of the Food and Drug Administration, Mr. Poplawski gave a short summary of the efforts being made by FDA to implement the FMSA. He talked in terms of six (6) leadership teams – Prevention, Inspection and Compliance, Imports, Federal and State, Fees, and Reports and Studies.