Sales Tax Voluntary Disclosure Agreements

Posted on December 10, 2013. Category: Tax Publications

Oops!  You’ve just started at a business and determined that they have had nexus in a jurisdiction for years but never registered or collected sales tax there.  What do you do?  Fortunately, most states allow for a voluntary disclosure agreement (VDA) to entice companies to self-report past discrepancies in their sales and use tax reporting.What is a VDA? A VDA is an agreement that allows a taxpayer to be granted a reduced look-back period (usually 3-4 years rather than the date the company actually began doing business – because the statute of limitations doesn...

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COGSA and the Himalaya Clause… Reconsidering Ocean Door-to-Door Shipments

Posted on December 06, 2013. Category: Logistics Publications

When organizing ocean transports, some people may prefer to tender a shipment as ‘door-to-door’ (from the door where cargo is shipping to the door of the final consignee) to a steamship line (SSL) or a forwarder because this would make things easier. After all, dealing with one party only sounds a lot easier than dealing with three (door to port carrier + ocean carrier + port to door carrier); however, ‘easier’ sometimes comes at unexpected risks and costs.Taking US rules as the base: Imagine you are in the US and you set up a door-to-door...

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Why Choose a 4PL?

Posted on November 05, 2013. Category: Logistics Publications

As organizations continue transcending international frontiers, the need for building synergies and maximizing results in Supply Chain Management continues to make the case for 4th Party Logistics Providers (4PLs).Officially invented by Anderson Consulting (now Accenture) in 1996, a 4PL is defined as a supply chain integrator that assembles and manages the resources, capabilities, and technology of its own organization with those of complementary service providers to deliver a comprehensive supply chain solution. With global operations becoming more complex, companies are faced with more and more challenges in their supply chain management; here is where a 4PL could not only be...

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New mega container Triple E ships and what that could mean for you!

Posted on October 30, 2013. Category: Logistics Publications

Maersk has begun receiving the first of 20 ordered new Mega ships (Triple E) capable of carrying 19,000 TEU (Twenty Foot Equivalent Unit). Maersk has just completed the maiden voyage of one of these vessels on July 28th, calling the port of Tanjung Pelepas. There has been a lot of debate about what this will mean on the Trans Pacific lanes and about the weak outlook in the Asia-Europe trade.It is estimated that the total ship orders that are due for delivery this year will add 10 - 11% to the global container fleet. With this additional capacity, and only an estimated demand...

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The Importance of Internal Controls

Posted on September 21, 2013. Category: Trade Publications

Nobody looks forward to being audited, especially by the U.S. Government, and this certainly holds true in regards to a customs audit. One way a company can mitigate the chances of an unsuccessful audit is to fully understand the audit process. Understanding the government requirements and the audit structure will enable a company to put processes and procedures in place to greatly minimize compliance gaps.Per the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) there are two types of U.S. governmental audits, financial and performance audits1. A customs compliance audit is actually a...

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Responsibilities in an Export Transaction

Posted on September 16, 2013. Category: Trade Publications

Regulation: 15 CFR 30: Foreign Trade Regulationshttp://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/granule/CFR-2012-title15-vol1/CFR-2012-title15-vol1-part30/contentdetail.htmlWhen an export is being arranged from the United States it is important that all applicable export regulations are followed. Certain exports require that an Automated Exports System entry (AES) be filed. This publication will define important terms for the export process, and will list the responsibilities of the parties involved in a US export.Key Terms EEI: The information that is filed via AES is known as the Electronic Export Information or (EEI). EEI is...

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A Global HTS Solution

Posted on September 13, 2013. Category: Trade Publications

The World Customs Organization is represented by 179 customs administrations across the world and these locations represent 98% of the world’s trade.   When goods are shipped internationally they must be classified for customs purposes using a Harmonized Tariff Schedule Number (HTS).  Each separate product is assigned a particular classification code. Amongst other things, the HTS number is used to help determine applicable duty rates. One of Allyn International’s core competencies is HTS classification, and this service is offered on a local or global level.  Regardless of country of import, Allyn can provide correct HTS...

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Port Challenges in West Africa

Posted on September 10, 2013. Category: Logistics Publications

At first glance, the many ocean ports dotting the Western and Central African coastline may suggest a robust economy and well developed transportation network. As many shippers to this region know, quantity does not mean quality in this case. Selecting the best gateway to import your goods into Africa could mean the difference between an on-time delivery and upwards of a 6 month delay.The ports in Africa are mainly owned by each country and as such, are dependent on current socio-economic conditions. Many countries have privatized port operations; however, regional or state instability still negatively impacts port...

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The Importance of Logistics Data

Posted on September 02, 2013. Category: Logistics Publications

Logistics data is a very important source of information used for evaluating all major Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). It may also play significant role in assessing the commercial aspects of the logistics. A significant competitive advantage can be gained by maintaining a consistent data set as it will show, over time, targeted areas for cost reduction as well as identify savings opportunities.Logistics data should be used for analyzing logistics costs, mode benchmarking, landed cost analyses and simple breakdown of mode, carrier, etc. by region.  The examination of this data first requires a look at historical data.  The...

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New Taxes in Hungary & France Impact Transportation Costs

Posted on July 02, 2013. Category: Logistics Publications

On 01 July 2013, Hungary implemented a road tax, a mandatory toll payment for all vehicles with a maximum total permissible weight over 3.5 tons. The payment is determined by the type of road (highway, motorway, etc.), category of motor vehicle (determined by number of axles) and the vehicle’s environmental classification or emission. This new electronic toll collection system is named “HU-GO” and refers to the 6,513 km Hungarian road network covering all routes suitable for freight transport – thus, the toll is unavoidable.  A simple estimate of the road tax can be used as follows:Highway:    ...

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