Saturday 19th Aug 2017 - Logistics & Supply Chain

SMEs to benefit from transatlantic deal

Small and medium businesses based in both Europe and America would benefit from passage of the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP), according to a report commissioned by FedEx.

The report by the Atlantic Council, cites three core challenges for SMEs: lack of clarity on how to get started, problems finding the right clients, and a “confusing mix of regulatory differences and contradictory registration requirements”.

To address modern e-commerce trade issues, the TTIP agreement, now in negotiation, will for the first time include a chapter on SMEs and specific recommendations and reforms in customs and regulatory coherence to help SMEs based in the US and the 28-member EU countries increase exports between the two largest economies in the world.

”With the tremendous increase in online shipping, it is critically important to our small and medium-sized business customers in America and Europe that we streamline rules, cut red tape, lower tariffs and harmonise regulations to make transatlantic trade simpler, cheaper and more seamless.” said Raj Subramaniam, executive vice president, FedEx.

“The goal of TTIP is to create a mutually beneficial agreement that will open up more economic growth and opportunities on both sides of the Atlantic.”

Recommendations include:

* Eliminate transatlantic tariffs

* Raise duty-free threshold for shipping to $800

* Simplify product testing and safety certification processes

* Recognise equivalent standards

* Make regulatory process more transparent

“As two highly-regulated, highly-competitive, and highly-integrated markets, it only makes sense the United States and European Union endeavour to remove some of the unnecessary barriers that still exist between them,” said author Garrett Workman.

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