Notes from Logistics Management Webinar

Some takeaways from LM’s 2015 Rate Outlook Webinar today:

Air Cargo outlook according to Chuck Clowdis of IHS Global

  • Expect 4-5% growth in air cargo market over next 20 years
  • APAC volume will continue to grow especially electronics
  • EU air carriers will continue to experience sluggish growth in 2015
  • Do not expect lower oil prices to result n lower rates
  • Oil price windfall will allow providers to invest in capacity (777’s) which will increase gradually
  • Currently approx. 100 777’s in service
  • Providers will still seek rate increases so prepare to negotiate

Exporting to Cuba FAQ’s

Today I joined a BIS  (Bureau of Industry and Security- Dept of Commerce) teleconference on the new export regulations for shipments to Cuba. As noted in a previous post, BIS has established a new license exception SCP- Support for the Cuban People. Two existing license exceptions, GFT and CTD, have been expanded. Following is a link to a list of FAQ’s regarding the new regs. As always, it is a good practice to check CFR 740.2, which covers restrictions on use of license exceptions.

Contact mitch@ for assistance

New Regs for Cuba

BIS has issued new regulations for exporting from the US to Cuba. More to come on this as I plan to participate in BIS conference later this month. For help with export regulations contact mitch@

Cuba – Amendment to EAR and Treasury Regulations

January 16, 2015 – The Bureau of Industry and Security published a rule in the Federal Register today to implement some of the changes in Cuba policy that the President announced on December 17, 2014. The rule makes changes to License Exceptions GFT and CCD. It also creates a new license exception Support for the Cuban People (SCP). It also creates case-by-case licensing policy for items for environmental protection of U.S. and international air quality, waters and coastlines. This was published simultaneously with a rule amending the Cuban Assets Control Regulations of the Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control.


The Addition of a New License Type (C62) for Support for the Cuban People (SCP) has been added to the Automated Export System

A new license type (C62) SCP was created in AES for the reporting of certain items exported and re-exported to Cuba that are intended to improve the living conditions of the Cuban people; support independent economic activity and strengthen civil society in Cuba; and improve the free flow of information to, from, and among the Cuban people.


Link to BIS rule

Link to Treasury rule

Mitch’s Comment in Talking Logistics

  • Mitch Kostoulakos CTL,LCB Good article. I would add that a preferred shipper should understand the difference between negotiating a good deal with carriers vs rate shopping every move. 

Comment in Airlines and Aviation


Customs Broker Exam Tips Re-Visited


If you are planning to take the customs brokers exam in April you should be well into your preparations by now. In a previous post I shared the prep strategies that worked for me. Here is the info again with the key steps highlighted. Best of luck but don’t rely on luck.

According to CBP Customs and Border Protection passing rates for the customs brokers exam average only 3-11% nationwide. The test is given twice per year in April and October. It consists of 80 multiple choice questions and a passing grade is 75%. The exam is open book which makes it seem easy. However, the books consist of  the HTUS Harmonized Tariff of the United States and CFR 19 Code of Federal Regulations, totaling hundreds of pages. The difficulty is in being able to quickly access the right section for each question. It is a four hour exam so three minutes per question is not much time.

I took a prep course in Boston taught by  Atty. Mary Wright. The class met two nights per week for 6 weeks prior to the exam. Mary explained the material very thoroughly from her background as a customs attorney and prior experience as an import specialist for CBP. We also reviewed previous exams in class. As good as this class was, I would not have been able to pass the exam without additional study. I estimate that I spent about 40-50 hours on weekends leading up to the exam.

I used 6 previous exams and a 3 step process. In step 1 I took each test for accuracy, ignoring the clock. In step 2 I took the tests again in the same order, while timing myself to make sure I could finish within 4 hours. I believe that step 3 was the key to my success. For this phase I circled all the questions I had missed in steps 1 and 2 and created a separate mini exam which I took several times until I answered all the questions correctly.


2015 Schedule B Codes

Schedule B codes have been updated for 2015. Best practices for exporters include checking to make sure Schedule B codes are up to date. Using obsolete or inaccurate codes can mean customs delays, onerous re-work and lengthy communications with customs agencies in destination countries, as well as possible fines and penalties. Take the time now to verify  codes and update your parts lists.

For help contact mitch@