RILA Urges Use of C-TPAT Program as Model for Public-Private Partnership

Cites program's increased supply chain security as reason for adoption by Department of Homeland Security

Arlington, VA — November 22, 2005 — The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) today advised the Department of Homeland Security to follow the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program as a model for a successful public-private partnership as it looks to advance cargo security.

In a letter submitted to Secretary Michael Chertoff, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), RILA urged Chertoff to support the C-TPAT program a critical component to increasing supply chain security globally, and a model example of how a public-private partnership works for both the government and industry participants.

"C-TPAT has become a globally recognized brand," said RILA's Jon Gold, vice president of global supply chain policy. "It is critical for the success of any supply chain security effort that there is global recognition and adoption of security measures. C-TPAT is one part of the overall global approach that will help accomplish this."

The C-TPAT program's risk-based approach allows participating companies to determine their security needs based upon their risk within individual countries. RILA members, as well as numerous other C-TPAT members, are working to ensure compliance with the C-TPAT program including hiring additional staff to manage the program, educating company executives and business partners (including foreign suppliers) about the requirements of the program, and working closely with Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

"We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Commissioner Bonner for the leadership he has shown throughout his tenure as Commissioner of Customs and Border Protection," Gold continued. "We hope that the next commissioner will share the same approach as Commissioner Bonner, especially his engagement with the trade community."

The Retail Industry Leaders Association is an alliance of retailer and supplier companies. RILA members represent almost $1.4 trillion in sales annually and operate more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers nationwide. Its member retailers and suppliers have facilities in all 50 states, as well as internationally, and employ millions of workers domestically and worldwide. Through RILA, members of the retail industry can work together to improve their businesses and the industry as a whole.

For more information on C-TPAT and solutions for supply chain security, see "Building the Secure Supply Chain," the Net Best Thing article in the June/July 2003 issue of iSource Business.

Imminent terrorist attacks or no, your competitive advantage demands that you secure your company's supply chain. Read more in "Supply Chain Security: Is Your Company Complacent or Engaged?," in the February/March 2005 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.

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