THE United States Customs & Border Protection this week commended CTSI Logistics and the Luen Thai Apparel Affiliates-Saipan during an inspection visit to the island to validate the company’s security plans and practices.
The following companies submitted their agreement for voluntary participation: CTSI Container Line, CTSI Logistics, Wooliston Apparel, TellaS Ltd, Chatelaine and GJM (HK) for certification under the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT).
Launched in 2002, C-TPAT is part of the Homeland Security Act administered under the US Customs & Border Protection, US Department of Homeland Security to ensure all cargo getting into the US from various ports of origin is safe and free from any terrorist influence.
Two US Customs inspectors met with CTSI Logistics management and Tan Holdings affiliate apparel representatives on October 21 to review the companies’ security policies and procedures in detail. The inspectors also took a tour of the company’s apparel factory complex in Lower Base.
“I have visited many importer facilities all over the world and the recommendations I would give to them, you are already doing. This is really a classic example of a well-integrated supply chain,” said Chief Inspector Daniel J. Sedley.
Six of the entities affiliated with CTSI and the Tan Holdings group worldwide recently applied for C-TPAT membership. They include CTSI Logistics, CTSI Container Line, Wooliston Apparel, TellaS Ltd., Chatelaine Inc., and GJM (HK) – the first two as freight forwarders and the last four as importers.
“We drew up security profiles of all our entities, including their service providers. All of these businesses signed an agreement to voluntarily participate and based on the security profiles, we had to submit a summary of the companies that outlined our security procedures in detail,” said Gabriella Wortmann, Supply Chain Manager who is helping to lead the project for the company.
All companies became certified in May 2003 based on the summary. The purpose of the validation process is to affirm, increase or defer the benefits of C-TPAT membership for the participant depending on the findings. Another objective is to build stronger partnership between US Customs and the trade and to develop solutions to address potential supply chain vulnerabilities.
The validation process started in August at CTSI Logistics’ New Jersey office where the company presented its overall security procedures to US Customs. Next was a visit to the CTSI Los Angeles facility, followed by Saipan. In December, US Customs officials will visit CTSI Manila, as well as affiliated apparel companies in the Philippines.
“You are to be commended for your excellent presentation,” said Michael Pfeiffer, Supervisory Inspector for U.S. Customs, Office of Field Operations. “It’s a matter of having all the proper policies, procedures and facilities in place to ensure your products get where they’re supposed to go and the integrity of the shipments and the containers do not become compromised. We are really encouraged with your entire process.”