Contacts: Edward Greenberg @ (202) 342-5277                  For Immediate Release

Janet Fields @ (912) 963-2964

Richard J. Roche @ (315) 552-5480


NCBFAA Files Comments Regarding the Tariff Exemption


Washington, DC: In a comment letter to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), the National Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association of America, Inc. (NCBFAA) expressed its strong support for extending exemptions pertaining to NVOCC negotiated rate arrangements (NRAs) to foreign-based unlicensed NVOCCs. As part of its efforts to simplify and expand the use of this tariff exemption, the NCBFAA has long urged the FMC to make it available to foreign-based NVOCCs as well as U.S.-licensed companies. In its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking issued February 21, 2013, the FMC sought comments from the public concerning this proposal.

        In its recently filed comments, the NCBFAA indicated that since the continued publication of NVOCC rate tariffs does not appear to serve any useful public purpose, there was little reason to continue those mandatory publication requirements for any NVOCCs, including foreign-based ones. Accordingly, the current restrictions precluding foreign-based registered NVOCCs from using the NRA process should be dropped.

        The NCBFAA also agreed with the Commission’s proposal to require that all foreign-based NVOCCs provide certain minimal information about their companies, renew their registrations every three years, appoint agents in the U.S. for service of process purposes, and make their records available on request to the Commission. As these are all requirements that are imposed on U.S.-licensed NVOCCs, making the same requirements applicable to foreign companies both supports the FMC’s regulatory responsibilities and helps provide a level playing field for U.S. companies.

        The Association’s Comments were filed in Docket No. 11-22, Non-Vessel-Operating Common Carrier Negotiated Rate Arrangements – Tariff Publication Exemption.

        Headquartered in Washington, DC, the NCBFAA represents more than 850 member companies with 100,000 employees in international trade - the nation's leading freight forwarders, customs brokers, ocean transportation intermediaries (OTIs), NVOCCs and air cargo agents, serving more than 250,000 importers and exporters. Established in 1897 in New York, NCBFAA is the effective national voice of the industry. Through its various committees, counsel and representatives, the Association maintains a close watch over legislative and regulatory issues that affect its members. It keeps them informed of these and other related issues through its weekly Monday Morning eBriefing, and various meetings and conferences throughout the year.

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