South Asia is one of the most populated regions on the planet. Characterized by its diverse ethnicities and cultures, the region is quickly becoming one of the largest centers for imports and exports worldwide. This trend has placed customs brokerage services at the forefront of supply chain planning. Furthermore, South Asia’s vast geopolitical landscape and various levels of business uncertainty create a unique representation of the global supply chain and trading models.
A Successful Customs Brokerage Strategy in South Asia
The complexities of the region require a thoughtful customs brokerage strategy. While a strong strategy needs to be tailored to your business, we believe a successful foundation should be centered around customs knowledge. Local regulatory expertise and market knowledge are essential to an efficient and compliant customs declaration and final mile delivery offering. Local customs regulations may cause challenges, but a knowledgeable customs broker's expertise and abilities reduce potential friction.
When speaking to customers in South Asia, we are often asked: “How should I manage customs operations and compliance regionally when there are so many local market differences?” The solution we most often recommend is using a credible single broker. This depends on the broker’s ability to build strong connections based on mutual trust while understanding the clients’ local market needs.
Utilizing a single broker allows you to build a relationship with a trusted source who can provide the right level of visibility, reporting, and consistency in their regional operating procedures. The single broker concept is the solution Expeditors is proud to recommend in South Asia. We believe it is essential to communicate performance, challenges, market intelligence, and regulatory changes centralized regionally with global oversight. Expeditors aims to offer declaration services under our own license using our own employees, wherever legally possible. This model, an important differentiator in the South Asia region, provides greater compliance controls and the ability for continuous innovation and consistency in systems, processes, and visibility.
Key benefits of using a single knowledge-based broker:
- Local, regional, and global expertise
- You have a trusted advisor who is up to date on regulatory changes
- Assists in ensuring that you are operating lawfully and compliantly
Another benefit of using a single broker is the limited number of systems and software needed. Expeditors has devoted many resources to the migration to a single proprietary global customs platform.
A single platform:
- Directly receives digital customs-related data, including source documents and reference data
- Reduces the need for manual entry work
- Allows for the automation of business rules and customer-specific requirements
- Provides greater accuracy and compliance in the customs declaration preparation process
The standard and consistent quality system that Expeditors has put in place globally has enabled us to more efficiently complete customs declarations for our customers. For example, Expeditors prioritized a significant investment in integration with regional customs authorities. This investment includes direct electronic connections with customs-approved third-party systems providers, which enables:
- Automatic receipt of critical customs declaration milestone events in our transportation system (i.e., dates and times for entry filing, government and customs holds, inspections, releases, license availabilities, delivery, etc.)
- Auto-indexing of approved customs declarations to our document imaging repository in real time
- Collecting, cataloging, and reporting on the entry declaration details as accepted by local government authorities
We hope this brief article gave you an overview of some of the pieces that make up a successful customs brokerage strategy in South Asia. If you want to talk directly about a tailored approach for your business, we encourage you to contact one of our local Customs Brokerage professionals.