Aug 9, 2016

Donald Trump is Right About Trade

For the last 26 years, I've worked in International Logistics.  There is a point that GOP Presidential Nominee Trump states that I think largely goes unnoticed, we can not export our goods to other countries.

The US has made the import process into the US seamless and flawless.  Freight moves into our country efficiently, simply, and without trade barriers.  We charge minimal duty, do not have over burdensome inspections or regulations, and we quickly move cargo through the system.  Anyone can be an importer - if you have an idea for a product, you can easily set up a business.

Trump is Right on Trade
Not so in other countries, some of the biggest offenders are:


Potential customers of US products must obtain from their government specific licenses, import permits, and present documents where every line item is scrutinized with the intent of keeping the product out of the country.  I've seen China request net weights of a washer and a screw.  I've seen Brazil issue large penalties for a weight of a 40ft container being off by 15 lbs.  In India, only the very wealthy can afford to obtain an import permit.  In Mexico, every product imported has to have a permit in place.  In practice, these are what is referred to as "Non-Tariff Barriers".  They don't prohibit our products from being imported they just make it so difficult that we effectively can not ship to them.

To add insult to injury, we have duty free programs with dozens of developing countries,  There products import to us with no duty or taxes, to encourage manufacturing THERE.  These are the poorest of the poor and our humanitarian relief agencies often send food, medicine, clothing, and supplies to help the indigent people in refugee camps or disaster areas.  One would think that the governments whose people are receiving these donations would open their arms and say thank you.  One would think...

The reality is that these corrupt governments see a US relief agency as a cash cow.  They throw up all sorts of road blocks to prevent the cargo from entering their country all the while holding the shipments hostage at storage fees that can top $300/day.  We've seen storage fees in the tens of thousands.

When Donald Trump speaks about trade - believe him.  He's telling you the truth.