DHL streamlining cross-border approach

DHL is the latest global-express logistics firm to take a stab at smoothing out ever-more complex freight movements over the borders between the U.S. and Canada, and Mexico by creating special “trade lanes”

DHL is the latest global-express logistics firm to take a stab at smoothing out ever-more complex freight movements over the borders between the U.S. and Canada, and Mexico by creating special “trade lanes” to speed the flow of goods.

“Typically, U.S.-to-Mexico shipments are routed through slower and more costly processes, often trucking or flying shipments to locations far from the border for clearance, leading to costly delays for shipments into Northern Mexico,” explained Lindsay Birley, executive vp-international products & services for Plantation, FL-based DHL.

“To better serve cross-border customers, we’re simplifying and streamlining that process by providing all needed services under one roof, at the border,” Birley noted. “DHL’s centralized customer clearance activities will occur at convenient border locations determined by the shipping requirements of our customers. By cutting steps out of the process, we are saving our customers time and money.”

During the first five years of DHL’s new North America Trade Lane initiative, Birley said the company plans to launch several expanded Border Operations Centers (BOCs). These will be staffed with bilingual customer service representatives and boast advanced technology inspection equipment and fast-track customs clearance systems to help customers better navigate the regulatory aspects of cross-border shipping..

These BOCs will focus on cross-border express and ground-parcel shipping within North America beginning in 2007. The first locations will be at Tijuana, Juarez, Nuevo Laredo, Reynosa and Matamoros, Mexico, with companion U.S. locations situated just across the border, said Birley.

“The new BOCs will not only bring us closer to our customers but also ensure close working relationships with local customs-clearance officials,” Birley added. “We’re applying what we’ve learned as the world’s leading international shipper to increase convenience and speed while lowering costs. We see enormous potential in making cross-border shipping easier for North American shippers.”

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