In the QAD Precision News Round-Up: 3 May 2019, US-China trade talks continue; Mexico wants USMCA ratified; Venezuela military action possible; DPD Ireland to invest €3.2m in electric fleet; Japan wants export controls for university research; and we look at four steps to streamlining global shipping.
On Tuesday, a new round of trade talks between the US and China kicked off in Beijing. US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He led the discussions. Both countries have made optimistic remarks about progress, but there are a number of areas of contention. These include intellectual property and how to reverse tariffs. Last year, the US imposed duties on $250bn worth of Chinese goods last year. In retaliation, China imposed tariffs on $110bn worth of US products. Both countries agreed to suspend tariffs last December as they work towards a trade deal. Talks will continue in Washington on 8 May. For greater detail on this, please see the BBC.
On Tuesday, Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador urged the US to ratify the NAFTA replacement, the United States - Mexico - Canada Agreement. Although the three signatories agreed the USMCA in at the end of last November, each country’s legislature must ratify the deal before it can come into force. In the US, Democrats have argued that the USMCA must give workers in Mexico the right to unionize. On Monday, the Mexican Senate passed a bill to strengthen the rights of trade unions. For more information, please click here.
This week, the US government warned Russia not to interfere in Venezuela. The warning comes on the heels of talk of US military intervention. US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo said military action of some kind was “possible.” Tensions between Moscow and Washington flared up when Juan Guaidó, the opposition leader who declared himself interim president in January, urged a military uprising this week to topple Mr Maduró. The US, along with more than 50 countries back Mr Guaidó. Russia and Cuba support Mr Maduró. President Donald Trump has also threatened a “full and complete” embargo of Cuba along with the “highest-level sanctions” if it continues military operations in Venezuela. Bruno Rodriguez, Cuba’s foreign minister, has denied that any Cuban troops in the country. For more details, please click here and here.
This week, DPD Ireland announced plans to invest €3.2m in electric vehicles for deliveries across 15 delivery routes in Dublin. The company also plans to add 150 new staff. DPD hopes to increase its carbon neutral fleet. However, Des Travers, CEO of DPD Ireland, noted that electric vehicle technology is not currently suitable for rural routes. The carrier has grown rapidly and expects 20 percent growth this year. For more information, please see RTE.
This week, Japan’s Mainichi newspaper reported that the Japanese government is to introduce export controls for universities collaborating with foreign companies. The government also plans to develop compliance systems to prevent “technology drain.” Both the US and China have increased regulatory requirements for universities working on projects involving controlled technology. For more details, please click here.
For global manufacturers, managing logistics across locations, countries and regions, as well as carriers, is no easy task. Add to that the fact that global trade is getting more complex. According to the World Trade Organization, tariffs between major economies, turbulent financial markets and weaker global economic growth, all negatively impacted trade in 2018. The WTO predicts that world merchandise trade volume will grow just 2.6 percent this year. The WTO may need to revise this already low forecast should trade tensions between the world’s largest economies persist.
Geopolitical maneuvering is beyond the control of global shippers. What they can do, however, is to standardize global trade operations across all their sites. When you have multiple manufacturing locations across the world, it can feel as though your enterprise is not one organization, but a number of different companies, all using different guidelines. With a standardized global shipping solution, all sites operate adhere to the same procedures, workflows and processes. In the QAD Precision Report we outline the four steps global shippers need to take to streamline shipping across all their locations. To read the complete report, please click here.
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