3:50pm: Bill Bostic, chief of the Census Foreign Trade Division kicks things off with a joke -- a series of jokes really -- about taking on his new job. It's all too much to do it justice here, but Bostic definitely wins the prize for most amusing routine of the day.
3:53 FTD ombudsman Jerome Greenwell takes over.
3:55 Where else but at Update can an appeal to master the intricacies of routed export transactions rouse the crowd?
4:01 There were 1.1 million shipments in AES in July alone, representing 97% of the total (the rest were on paper -- not sure if this includes a factor for all the exports not reported at all). I'm guessing any halfway decent software engineer could write a simple program to find countless export control violations in this treasure trove of instantly searchable AES data within a matter of few days.
4:04 Census beginning an audit project starting January. They will concentrate on companies which are non-compliant Option 4 filers, those reporting late, and those with numerous unresolved fatal errors.
4:09 Census will give USPPIs one year of past AES data upon request for free (older than that there's a fee), which could be a useful audit tool. (Of course, you should be keeping copies of everything you submit to Census in the first place.)
4:11 Paul Newman, AES client rep...
4:14 AES Fatal Error = No ITN = No Export, capish?
4:17 Don't forget AES proof of filing citation. See FTSR Letter 168 for more.
4:29 Census benchmark for AES compliance is 95 percent. Be below that for three consecutive months and you should expect to get a phone call (or worse).
4:34 Census recommends you read Appendix A - Commodity Filing Response Messages from their friends at CBP.
4:38 Q: Can something be done about the slow ITN response on Fridays? A: Yes, try another day.
4:41 Q: What's are the proportions of filings by USPPI or agent? A: 60-65% by agent, the balance by USPPI.
4:42 Q: Who gets fatal error reports? A: Always goes to filer, not necessarily USPPI.
4:44 Q: Will FTD visits to companies be announced in advance? A: Yes.
4:50 Q: Provide an example of a fixed mode of transportation. A: A pipeline.
4:51 Q: What happens after your third voluntary disclosure within a year? A: You get penalized (is this really how it's going to work? three strikes and your out? - ed.)
4:52 Q: Will post-departure filing go away? A: Don't know
4:52 Q: Will Option 4 open up again to new filers? A: Don't know
4:54 Q: How long does Census keep AES records? A: The USPPI should have or be able to obtain (from their agent) the past five years worth.
4:55 Q: When will AES recognize UPS Supply Chain Solutions as an air carrier? A: See me, we'll try to help.
4:55 Q: How do I confirm that no forwarders are using my EIN without authorization? A: Request records from Census. Hope to automate this.
4:58 Q: In a routed transaction, what does the USPPI need to provide? A: Nine elements specified in FTSR -- EIN, ECCN, Schedule B, etc.
5:00 Q: I asked a manufacturer for a classification and they said "the forwarded never asked me for it and I didn't know I needed it", then I recently asked a very well known forwarded and asked them why they didn't put an ECCN on a shipment and they said "if the manufacturer doesn't provide it we assume they don't need to classify". A: What a mess, they need help.
5:01 Q: Will Census be publishing a list of mitigating factors in the regulations? A: There will be a document that discusses voluntary disclosures on our website.
5:03 Q: Will AES be ready for HTS revision in 2007? A: Yes.
5:05 Q: Our Miami-based forwarders won't provide bills of lading or airwaybills? A: Tell us who they are, we'll give them a call.
5:09 Q: When will Schedule B go away? What's wrong with HTS? A: I don't disagree, but some people are used to HTS, so we keep it.