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Posted by Katerina Tsernotopoulos
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BTi Becomes an Australian Trusted Trader - Explanation of the Scheme

It is with great pleasure that we wish to announce BTi’s recent accreditation as an Australian Trusted Trader (ATT)!

Our new accreditation provides a light touch at the border, facilitating easier contact and access with specific areas of the Australian Boarder Force (ABF). As a Trusted Trader, BTi is now considered lower risk. Thus, shipments we handle are not as likely to face border holds or other processing delays. Moreover, our clients who also become an ATT will enjoy priority processing and, in some cases, accelerated transit times. As an ATT, our representatives will begin to receive exclusive invitations to ATT industry informative events. This will assist our staff in further developing their skill set, therefore enhancing the level of service we provide you with.

Australian Trusted Trader Scheme

Here is How We Became a Trusted Trader

Once we ensured that we met the application criteria, we applied. Home Affairs and the ABF, who administer the ATT scheme, assessed our structures, processes, compliance record, history and internal reviews of processing. The ATT applications helped BTi highlight areas for further improvements and fine tunning in our compliance processes.

More Benefits of the Trusted Trader Scheme

From now onwards, BTi has entitlement to “a seat at the table” where we will join forces with the ABF and other ATT members in deciding on industry initiatives.

Moreover, the DAWR is considering implementing a self-inspection scheme for trusted traders. QAP teams would then execute the self-inspection scheme. BTi’s warehouse in Ravenhall, is a Quarantine Approved, Bonded Warehouse. For instance, consider the below scenario;

Some type of risk is found in BTi’s client’s shipments. We would then be eligible to do the inspection ourselves. Again, saving our customers time and money from outsourcing booking officers.

Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs)

As per the ABF, “MRAs recognise ATT’s in economies where Australia has arrangements in place. These arrangements give your goods priority treatment at the borders of our partner economies. They enable faster processing, which means more predictability, certainty, and distribution speed to overseas markets.”

If the freight forwarder, as well as their consignee, are both ATT’s, there are some mutually benefiting synergies under MRA’s. For example, if there is a customs issue, the freight forwarder may contact the case manager on behalf of their customer and resolve the intervention faster. Additionally, the DAWR is currently negotiating MRA’s with Thailand, Japan and the US.

 

Benefits for ATTT Importers and Exporters

We highly encourage Australian importers and exporters to pursue their ATT accreditation, as directly, they can enjoy greater benefits.

 

Duty Deferral

Larger importers/exporters who move cargo several times per month, are eligible for duty deferral, under ATT. Basically, instead of paying duty for each shipment, duty deferral allows ATT’s, to consolidate their duty into one monthly payment, for some goods. This further benefits Trusted Traders by cutting down costs and time for the according administrative steps. Duty Deferral especially benefits Trusted Traders who are able to obtain cargo release before duty payment, where there is a monthly duty payment on a single invoice to the ABF. The cash flow advantages allow the importer to sell their product and receive payment before they need to pay duty.  Home Affairs has advised that increasing the duty deferral to 60 days, is not feasible due to budget restrictions.

Future Possibilities for Duty Deferral

Interestingly, Home Affairs is also considering the possibility for the deferral of other import liabilities. Such liabilities would provide a more significant benefit to a wider range of trusted traders.

Furthermore, Home Affairs has raised the potential of deferring GST to quarterly payments for some cases. The current 30 days is available to qualified importers. We encourage ATT’s to enquire with the ATO for further information about eligibility.

 

Origin Advance Ruling

Origin Advance Ruling benefit works hand in hand with shipments containing goods, which qualify under ChAFTA. The ruling mainly benefits Australian importers. Essentially, it negates the need for an origin certificate, in order to enjoy duty free with declaration of origin only. In other words, as an ATT, the importer will no longer pay customs duty in advance and get refunded afterwards where a Certificate of Origin is required.

 

Faster Consolidated Cargo Clearance

Consolidated cargo is when multiple individual shipments are combined in a single container. At the moment, import processing charges apply per import declaration for non-ATT’S. However, rather than lodging multiple different import declarations for each shipment within the consolidated cargo, ATT’s will only need to lodge one import declaration, potentially saving consignees hundreds of dollars per shipment.  This benefit assists importers, as well as, customs brokers. There is a provision within the ACC, which ties to the consignees ABN. In practise, if you lodge all your LCL together, the ABF will allow you to process it that way. Whereas, if you are not a Trusted Trader, the system will reject your entry.

 

Known Consignor Scheme

Known Consignor Scheme applies to exporters, alongside freight forwarders too. An individual or organisation becomes a Known Consignor, once they pass certain assessments. Evaluation of secure premises and vetting of all internal staff is obligatory. As a Known Consignor, your export cargo will avoid scanning and the associated delays. On the plus side, if you are already a Trusted Trader, becoming a Known Consignor is less rigorous.

 

The accreditation also comes with excellent news for companies who require specialty trades from overseas. A simplified TSS visa process is available to ATT’s through a streamlined process of becoming an accredited sponsor.

BTi Logistics National Customs Broker, John Chambers and our National Sales & Development Manager, Michael Parakh were recently invited to the 2019 Australian Trusted Trader Symposium. During the symposium, John and Michael had the opportunity to engage and network with other members of the ATT scheme. An interesting debate about the Black Economy took place among the participants. Interestingly, we found out that there are now 400 plus trusted traders and by 2020 membership is expected to increase to 1,000. The continuous initiation of ATT benefits, would be the main reason for the booming success of the accreditation scheme. Finally, BTi was presented with a globe and welcomed to the ATT scheme during the symposium in Brisbane.

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