Global Logistics Essentials: What to Know Before You Source, Import, or Export

Global logistics can certainly be challenging. However, the right partner can drastically simplify the process.

ASF Chief Commercial Officer, Jeffrey Plumley, featured in Inbound Logistics

A 30 year international logistics vet, Jeffrey Plumley spoke with Inbound Logistics to support the article, "Global Logistics Essentials: What to Know Before You Source, Import, or Export". Please see Jeffrey's excerpt as well as a link to the full article.


Classification and valuation are two pillars of customs clearance, says Sergio Retamal, founder and CEO of Global4PL. Classification drives the tariffs and restrictions that apply to goods, while valuation is the basis for assessing duties and taxes.

When determining classification, it’s crucial to know the rules governing the product and its use, among other facts. A ball bearing for a plane, for example, generally is classified differently than one to be used in a toy.

Companies that incorrectly classify imports can face penalties. Moreover, while it’s prudent to ask a lawyer or broker for their informed opinion, the importer remains responsible for classification decisions.

One way to ensure an accurate classification is to ask the government for a ruling. “The U.S. Customs Binding Ruling program is one of the most underutilized means of shipping efficiency,” says Jeffrey D. Plumley, chief commercial officer and licensed customs house broker with ASF.

A ruling stipulates the correct classification for imported goods, enabling the importer to correctly plan for the duties that will be applied to their items.

Shippers also should consider becoming a participant in the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program, suggests Matthew Fotouhi, chief technology officer with Magaya Corporation.

Shippers that join C-TPAT agree to work with CBP to protect their supply chains, identify security gaps, and implement security measures and best practices, among other steps. In exchange, C-TPAT members are considered to be low risk, and are less likely to be examined at a U.S. port of entry—which means they typically reap benefits like fewer CBP examinations and shorter wait times at the border."

Original article in full can be accessed here.

ASF Customs Clearance

Navigating United States customs clearance is challenging, but necessary process for anyone importer or exporting product internationally. This is why importers and exporters use ASF Customs Services to seamlessly handle their freight. Our team of knowledgable customs professionals seamlessly navigate the process from start to finish, ensuring your product ships efficiently.

Meet Our Expert

This article is reviewed by Jeffrey D. Plumley, Chief Commercial Officer and Licensed US Customs House Broker.

Jeff has an extensive background in global logistics, spanning various freight forwarding executive management positions. As a Licensed US Customs House Broker, he has managed regulatory compliance and is a worldwide expert in Flexitank transportation logistics.

In addition to his strong forwarding and Flexitank background, Jeff was also Head of Regulatory Compliance and Sales for a major global logistics software provider. He has over 30 years of logistics experience and a strong leadership background having graduated from the Citadel.

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