Posted in International Shipping

It is mandatory to declare the commodity of your shipment

A retail shipper and/or shipping clerk needs to know the commodity of each shipment. Commodities vary from household goods, generators, furniture, refrigerators, microwave ovens, other home appliances, and electronics such as televisions, radios, computers, and cell phones & accessories. Contraband of any kind – e.g., firearms & ammunition, liquors, illegal drugs, and tobacco – are prohibited by law.

Shipping barrels of personal effects from anywhere in the US to the Caribbean can be a labor of love. Consequently, we all have a responsibility to keep everything above board. The commodity of choice when shipping to the Caribbean Islands is for the most part household goods. Household goods range from non-perishable food items, clothes, shoes, to home decor products. Lots of retail shipping companies with their freightforwarders, freight brokers, and customs brokers, offer customers the right logistics infrastructure that makes it possible for them to stay in touch with loved ones in their country of origin by shipping an array of items as personal cargo. Americans, on the other hand, use that same structure to build and maintain relationships with friends, non-profit organizations, business associates, and colleagues in the Caribbean. Most individual customers opted out of doing an Export Declaration (Export Dec) of their shipment because it means an additional charge to the costs of international shipping. An HS Code is mandatory in many instances for 2 reasons: 1) It tells the shipper and customs, these are items with no export restrictions; 2) It’s another way to describe the contents of each barrel without an Export Dec and hence facilitate the inspection of any shipment by customs agents.

It is crucial at this juncture to address the elephant in the room – i.e., human trafficking. Having human cargo on board of any vessels is a serious and severe violation of international laws. Human trafficking is unequivocally a crime against humanity. Therefore, all governments on this planet should do their parts in prosecuting human traffickers to the full extent of the law.

To comment on this blog post, Leave a Reply or write your question below. I am looking forward to receiving your input on ways we all can eliminate contraband in shipments and combat human trafficking on a global level.

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