Foreign Trade Zones and Coronavirus

In recent months, coronavirus has filled the news. COVID-19 has had a profound impact on people and industries across the world. Manufacturing and supply chains have not been exempted from this impact.

Foreign Trade Zones offer a unique opportunity to help shelter companies from this evolving situation. We’ve broken down what we can do to assist if your company is feeling the impact of COVID-19.

Global Shortages

China is one of the largest producers of goods in the world. Because of this, the epidemic that is facing Chinese factories and workers has taken its toll on businesses across the globe. Not only are goods in short supply, but the containers that are used to ship them are also sparse throughout the world.

Quarantines and cordons have prevented workers and people from attending work, and the spread of the virus has made airlines cancel flights. Air trade and travel are at a lower rate than they have been in a very long time, which causes issues for industries that rely on this income or transportation.

In fact, the American passengers that were extracted from one cruise ship where the coronavirus was spreading, the Diamond Princess, were held in isolation for fourteen days. This event was very significant, since the United States government hasn’t held a federally mandated quarantine in over fifty years.

All of this has wreaked havoc on domestic businesses that are trying to operate with a smaller amount of or lack of foreign goods.

Planning Ahead

As COVID-19 spreads throughout the world, and as healthcare professionals attempt to stop it from worsening, these shortages are likely to only get worse.

To protect your company from situations like this in the future, it’s important to make sure to have a store of your products and components in the United States. Our Foreign Trade Zone Division can store large levels of inventory for you, all without it being technically imported to the country until you need it. That means you won’t pay tariffs on your parts until you need them, but they will still be conveniently stored right here in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Similarly, you can reduce supply chain disruptions and shipping times by utilizing an FTZ. Receive, inspect, process, assemble and warehouse your product within the United States all before paying import taxes.

If your business isn’t utilizing an FTZ right now, it’s not too late to start. Reach out to our team to learn about how we can help you build inventory and keep the parts you need on hand, even as the coronavirus outbreak continues to slow down the global circulation of goods.

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