Monday, October 17, 2011

CBP Posts Answer Key to October 2011 Broker Exam

U.S. Customs and Border Protection posted the answer key to the October 2011 customs broker exam. We will review and determine whether any questions are protestable. Exam key can be found at

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

ABI Notice regarding the Classification of Sets

On Oct. 6, 2011, U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a notice through the Automated Broker Interface regarding sets classified in accordance with GRI 3(b) or 3(c). Specifically, CBP reminded ABI users to report in column 30 the HTSUS number of the part of the set that provides the duty rate for the set when the set is classified pursuant to GRI 3(b) or 3(c). Users should precede this HTSUS number with a SPI of “X.”

However, the set classification does not stop there. Each article included in the set needs to be classified separately and reported on a separate line, as though it was not part of a set. Those articles of the set that do not provide the duty rate for the set as a whole should be preceded with a SPI of “V.” Brokers will also need to report the quantity and value attributed to each article with the “V” SPI.

Here is where you can find this message on the Cargo Systems Messaging Service on CBP’s website:

Monday, October 10, 2011

More “Free” Trade Anyone?

Last week, the House Ways and Means Committee approved the bills sponsored by Representative Eric Cantor and a co-sponsor that is the first step in implementing the U.S. Free Trade Agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia. The entire House of Representatives and the Senate are expected to vote on the bills the week of October 10.

Congressional action on these agreements has been a long time coming. The parties entered into the U.S.- Korea Free Trade Agreement on June 30, 2007 The U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement was entered into on November 22, 2006, as amended by both governments on June 28, 2007 (Colombia TPA). The parties entered into the U.S.- Panama Trade Promotion Act on June 28, 2007 (Panama TPA).

Both the House and the Senate are expected to pass the three bills, referred to as the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, the United States- Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act and the United States- Panama Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act. Although President Obama is expected to sign the bills into law rather quickly, each Agreement will not take effect until the United States is satisfied that each country will be in compliance with the terms of the Agreements, respectively. For example, there is some concern that labor rights issues could delay the effect date of the Colombia Agreement. It is unlikely that any terms of the agreements will change between now and the enactment date. However, it is doubtful that the Korea FTA, Colombia TPA or the Panama TPA will take effect before the beginning of 2012. It could take up to several months for the President to certify that the countries are in compliance.

Korea FTA H.R. 3080

Colombia TPA H.R. 3078

Panama TPA H.R. 3079

Friday, October 7, 2011

October 2011 Broker Exam - Preliminary Answers

Determining potential answers for the broker's exam questions after the test is different in a few key ways from taking the test, but none is more key than the fact that we have more than four hours. That means that we can take the time to research as much as we need to in order to get the most accurate (though still unofficial) document possible to all of you.

Click here to get our preliminary unofficial exam answers as a free download from our online checkout system.

As always, remember that these answers represent only our opinion. The official answers will come from Customs and Border Protection in a few weeks and will be posted on their site. In other words, we probably answered the majority of the questions correctly, but these answers do not guarantee whether or not you've passed; it merely is presented as a helpful tool for broker students who are (quite understandably) eager to have any idea of where they stand.

If you would like to share your answers, explanations and comments, we invite you to post them as comments to this blog; however, we ask that comments be professional and to the point. We cannot respond to all of the comments, but this forum will provide you an opportunity to converse with each other.

Happy browsing!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Announcement: October 2011 CBP Broker Exam Answers

One common question we're receiving is "Are you/when are you going to post answers to the October Exam?"

Have no fear! We have begun researching and answering questions, and are planning on releasing a preliminary set of answers on Friday.