BIMCO is concerned that shipowners who do not have their headquarters in the United States (usually smaller shipowners) are prevented from benefiting from the benefits of CTPAT. In the future, BIMCO will work to develop a solution for companies that do not have a U.S. headquarters, which rewards active participation in the fight against drug trafficking. The development of such a program – a CTPAT light, if you prefer – will depend on CBP`s willingness to listen to and adapt its current approaches, and it will also be necessary for additional resources to be made available within CBP to finance such new initiatives. While this may be difficult in the short term, the benefits of the U.S. security situation justify, I hope, the necessary allocation of CBP funds, but time will tell. The BIMCO secretariat will report to members on all developments as soon as possible. The IMSC is now made up of seven countries (United States, United Kingdom, AUS, Saudi Arabia, Water, Bahrain, Albania). Major naval powers such as France, Spain, Italy and Germany refused to join the coalition because they disagreed over the US exit from the nuclear deal with Iran and the ensuing policy of maximum pressure. In addition to meeting the eligibility criteria, a shipping company must also complete the “Minimum Security Criteria – Sea Carriers,” the latest version of which is dated November 2019 (see appendix). BIMCO had a special version of this agreement with U.S.
Customs, under which BIMCO could declare members who, in exchange, would receive a reduction in smuggling penalties if they had taken the necessary steps to prevent drug smuggling on board. To be eligible for CTPAT certification, a C-TPAT shipping company must be associated with the US Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT). It is a joint government-business initiative that aims to establish cooperative relationships that strengthen the entire supply chain and border security and recognize that customs can only provide the highest possible level of security through close cooperation with its industrial partners. The C-TPAT documents clearly show that its roots lie in the Sea Carrier Initiative Agreement (SCIA) and the Business Anti-Smuggling Coalition (BASC). After the terrorist attacks of September 11, the focus was on terrorism and CBP launched the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) initiative. Since the withdrawal of the United States from the nuclear agreement and the implementation of the policy of maximum pressure on Iran, international shipping has been threatened with attack in the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman. While the prospects for continued cooperation with CBP are good, there is still a concern that the only security initiative in force is C-TPAT, as it is primarily designed for large companies and requires an office in the United States. BIMCO took the initiative to draft as soon as possible the text of a clause that takes into account the potential liability for the costs of sending security forces to U.S. ports. BIMCO, however, is skeptical of the 24-hour manifesto rule, with BIMCO questioning the ability of the U.S. Customs Authority to analyze the carrier within the 24-hour timeframe and report back to the carrier. In addition, BIMCO considers that the 24-hour rule in its current form, when it comes to bulk goods, is not currently applicable.
In 2020, BIMCO aims to develop with CBP a solution that allows U.S. officeless companies to become members of C-TPAT and enjoy some of the same benefits as reducing drug penalties and providing priority treatment by Customs. In 2019, BIMCO recommended that navigation continue to pass through the area in order to follow the long-standing reporting system put in place by UK maritime trade operations linked to Somali piracy. It is in the interest of international shipping that IMSC have the best possible image of maritime activities in the region.