TradeLane

Trade Agreements = Free Money

Posted by Rob Moore

12/16/15 10:26 AM

Free Money

How often does anyone really get free money? When you buy something at the store only to find out that you need to fill out the card and mail it in to get the rebate. Most people think about it on the way home and then leave the card on their desk. 

But, what is the risk? You may end up giving some information to a company that probably already has your information. You may end up actually getting the money back. It is a minor investment of time to recoup some cash. An interesting statistic says that the majority of people who take advantage of rebates live in households that have an annual income of $100,000 or are between the ages of 35 to 64 and are women. Most of the rebates that go unfiled because of a technicality, it is not completed properly, or the man that gets it can’t be bothered to send it in.

I read another statistic that 70% of companies do not fully utilize trade agreements. When your country enters into a trade agreement with a country that you do business with, or want to do business with. What are your options? 

You could read the actual agreement to see if you could make it work for you. Have you ever tried to read one of these things? They are a pure sedative. I would recommend this to an insomniac. 

You could ignore the agreement and keep going on the way you are. The government is quite happy to keep taking your money even though there is an avenue to create positive cash flow. You could reach out to a trade compliance specialist who makes it their business to understand and utilize these agreements. 

Okay… So, this is what I do and perhaps a shameless plug. However, with some education and some investments your company could be taking advantage of the programs that are available and take the lead over your competitors. As an importer, you could reduce or eliminate the import duty or MPF that your company pays on products or on raw materials you import. As an exporter or seller, you can advertise your products as trade agreement compliant in a market you want to take advantage of.

In my colleague Nara Mitchell’s blog “Why Yes You Do Need a Compliance Expert”, she talks about the light on your car’s dashboard that you ignore until it is too late. The gist of the blog is that the smarter person knows when it makes sense to put some things in the hands of experts, especially who help you to start utilizing trade agreements with confidence and saving money quickly. 

So don’t go forgetting your rebate card on your desk, make sure you get the money back that you deserve. It is worth your while to make the investment to obtain some professional help to benefit from the various preferential trade agreements that are out there. Reach out to Tradewin today. 

Topics: Reconciliation, Free Trade Agreements

Written by Rob Moore

As Senior Manager of Consulting for Tradewin's Canadian practice, Rob brings expertise in H.S. Classification, Valuation, North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Least Developed Country Tariff (LDCT), and General Preferential Tariff (GPT), as well as extensive experience with the automotive and textile industries.