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U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced that all 10 of its Centers of Excellence and Expertise Centers are now operating at full capacity. The full operation of all 10 centers is the culmination of considerable work within CBP and with trade stakeholders to streamline operations and modernize the way CBP does business. The centers provide centralized points of contact for specific industries such as apparel, electronics, machinery, natural gas, pharmaceuticals, automotive, and more.
“The Centers transform the way CBP interacts with trade stakeholders while meeting the needs of economic growth and facilitating supply chain security,” said CBP Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske. “As one of the agency’s major modernizing efforts to streamline trade operations, the Centers increase uniformity at our ports and enhance CBP’s industry expertise to better enforce the nation’s trade laws.”
President Biden announced on April 12th his intent to nominate Chris Magnus, who has served as police chief of Tucson, Ariz., since January 2016, as commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
According to a White House press release, Magnus rose through the ranks of the Lansing, Mich., police department and has also served as police chief in the cities of Fargo, N.D., and Richmond, Calif. “In each of these cities,” the press release said, “Magnus developed a reputation as a progressive police leader who focused on relationship-building between the police and community, implementing evidence-based best practices, promoting reform, and insisting on police accountability.” The White House also cited Magnus’ “extensive experience in addressing immigration issues” during his time in Tucson near the U.S.-Mexico border.
Enforcement of the prohibition of importation of goods mined, produced, or manufactured by forced labor is on the rise. CBP has published a webpage that contains withhold release orders issued by the Commissioner and findings published in the Federal Register. CBP does not generally publicize specific detentions, re-exportations, exclusions, or seizures of the subject merchandise that may have resulted from the withhold release orders or findings.
On April 29, 2021, Kevin J. Kurland, Acting Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the U.S. Department of Commerce, announced an administrative settlement of $3,290,000 with SAP SE (SAP), a multinational software company based in Walldorf, Germany. SAP also agreed to complete three audits of its export compliance program over a three-year period. SAP voluntarily self-disclosed potential violations of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to BIS and cooperated with the investigation conducted by the Boston Field Office of BIS’s Office of Export Enforcement.