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Simplifying and streaming trade facilitation and customs procedures

Complex laws and policies at foreign borders are putting e-commerce enabled American small businesses at a disadvantage, slowing the speed of delivery, increasing costs, and compromising U.S. competitiveness.

E-commerce enables millions of American small businesses to find customers and make sales around the world in ways that were impossible just a couple of decades ago. The U.S. maintains streamlined and simplified trade facilitation and customs procedures, including an $800 de minimis and a $2,500 informal clearance threshold. American small businesses benefit from more rapid border clearance and reducing the burdens of importing low-value goods. These reduced logistics costs improve the bottom line of American small businesses across industries that import components for assembly and value-added manufacturing. Yet complex laws and policies at foreign borders are putting e-commerce enabled American small businesses at a disadvantage, slowing the speed of delivery, increasing costs, and compromising U.S. competitiveness.

Digital trade barriers impact businesses of all sizes in every sector of our economy.

When other countries enact digital trade barriers, it hurts American companies’ ability to compete internationally and reach new markets.

Other countries have antiquated, complex, and costly customs procedures that make it difficult for U.S. small businesses to compete. In addition, some countries are reacting to the rise in American led e-commerce by implementing protectionist customs policies that will raise costs and slow delivery times, limiting U.S. companies’ ability to serve customers in other markets.

Foreign governments are implementing policies that arguably violate the WTO Moratorium on applying customs duties on cross-border electronic transmissions by treating electronic transmissions as physical goods that require burdensome customs documentation and processing. This will negatively impact every sector of the U.S. economy.

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