Supply Chain Competition

August 1, 2005
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Global manufacturers such as IBM report that C-TPAT (Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism) and other compliance and security programs are adding savings to their bottom line. And, they're leading a campaign to get foreign governments to endorse a new security framework agreement put forth by the World Customs Organization.

IBM does business in over 160 countries and is a "huge advocate" of the WCO standards, says a supply chain executive with the company, who added that customs standards will "promote certainty and predictability in the supply chain." IBM's global supply chain is both large and complex. The company ships the equivalent of five fully loaded 747s each day.

Two-thirds of the WCO's 166 members have already agreed to implement the security framework, agreed upon during the annual meeting on June 23 in Brussels. The framework calls for modernizing customs administrations and equipment to improve the security of global supply chains.

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