By Anne Van de Heetkamp, VP, Product Management, Global Trade Intelligence, Descartes Systems Group
SAP-GTS trade content
Global trade management is a dynamic and volatile professional discipline. Dealing with geopolitical turmoil, annual updates to harmonized tariff schedules, and trade tensions among many other issues, organizations typically have to work at warp speed to understand the implications of the constantly-evolving regulatory landscape on their data and their business,

Having the “right” global trade content is, therefore, certainly important. But for SAP-GTS systems, it is also crucial that the content can be easily pulled into the ERP platform so that users are able to effectively navigate these complexities.

This was one of the key messages conveyed at a recent SAP-GTS virtual event hosted by Espresso Tutorials, a leading provider of SAP training materials and services, and sponsored by Descartes Systems Group, itself a preferred provider of compliance content for SAP-GTS systems. You can watch a video of the virtual event here, in which Jackson Wood, Director, Industry Strategy, Global Trade Intelligence, Descartes, spoke about the critical importance of having both the right content and the right capabilities to navigate trade compliance complexity.

What’s at stake?

There’s so much at risk when we talk about the “right” trade content. Not having accurate, up-to-date global trade management data feeding into the SAP-GTS system can cause significant negative impacts on the business, including:

  • Fines and regulatory penalties: levied if an organization does not pay attention to compliance requirements, like export controls and denied, sanctioned or debarred party lists.

The right trade content for SAP GTS accurately reflects global regulatory requirements.

  • Inaccurately classifying goods for import or export: can cause costly supply chain disruptions (on an already fragile supply chain), such as seized or held shipments.

The right trade content for SAP GTS includes up-to-date, accurate classification data that support a smooth supply chain operation.

  • Missed market opportunities: If a country or jurisdiction has complex regulatory requirements and management decides that the complexity is too great or costly, companies can suffer missed market opportunities, causing significant hindrance to growth objectives.

The right trade data for SAP GTS gives organizations the confidence to take advantage of new market opportunities.

What global trade content for SAP do you need?

Let’s think about the steps that happen in an international shipping transaction. There are 4 key elements of global trade management content that need to be considered as part of a transaction that flow through SAP-GTS.

  • What is the product? What are the considerations that your organization needs to be mindful of about this product? What is its tariff classification? Is it controlled? Does it have trade agreement implications? Are there quotas, embargos, or other types of regulatory restrictions on this product?
  • Who/Where is the product coming from/going to? What are the landed cost implications? Is the entity sanctioned, restricted, or embargoed? Is the entity in a country that has challenges or regulatory requirements that need to be navigated? Is the entity affiliated with other third parties that could be a challenge? What is the company’s ownership structure and do the owners have restrictions?
  • Authorization? Is there a license or another type of agreement or exception that needs to be considered? What are the regulatory considerations to be embedded in the trade compliance activities?
  • Record keeping requirements? How will your organization demonstrate reasonable care and due diligence in maintaining the integrity of transactions?

Descartes has the right global trade management content for SAP-GTS

Descartes is the market leader for global trade content for SAP GTS. Some of their extensive data offerings include:

  • Free trade agreements for over 150 countries and territories
  • HS, duty, and tax information for over 175 countries and territories
  • Trade regulations for over 200 countries and territories
  • Over 200 denied/restricted party lists
  • Over 400,000 restricted sanctions and entities
  • Over 250 preferential trade programs

Descartes’ global coverage is unmatched and continues to expand thanks to significant and ongoing investments to support data collection, engineering and customer delivery.

But is it enough just to have the right trade content?

Global Trade content for SAP GTS is essential. But can it be effectively and efficiently consumed into the SAP-GTS environment? World Customs Organization (WCO) and World Trade Organization (WTO) publications are not always consistent. Independent research firms provide data in different formats. It is critical to have the right capabilities to leverage trade content so that it can be used by the SAP-GTS system.

There is a significant amount of data engineering and technical work required to make sure that the global trade management data works within the SAP-GTS schema. This is where Descartes’ expertise working with SAP-GTS offers value. Descartes catalogs, synthesizes and normalizes government published information. For example, they make sure that a harmonized tariff schedule from the United States and a harmonized tariff schedule from Turkey both have consistent and usable interoperability so SAP-GTS can be as effective as possible.

Right Content + Right Capabilities = Value

Descartes is a strategic enabler for global trade compliance companies. They help make sure that SAP-GTS customers have access to the most accurate and up-to-date global trade management content. But they also ensure that the information is engineered in a way that enables SAP-GTS to produce output that customers can rely on to add value to their business.

Descartes has a unique value to add in helping companies have success with SAP-GTS implementations. They can be a strategic partner as those implementations advance over time.

Get more information about how Descartes can help maximize SAP global trade services capabilities with the “Right” content for SAP. Or Contact Us to talk to an expert.