Top policymakers and industry experts will share their perspectives at the Coalition of New England Companies for Trade's (CONECT) 15th Annual Northeast Cargo Symposium (NECS) in Providence, R.I., on Thursday, Nov. 10. Over 200 importers, exporters, government officials, legal experts, and providers of international trade and transportation services from throughout the Northeast are expected to attend the conference, which will feature seven educational sessions as well as networking opportunities and exhibits.
Keynote speaker Walter Kemmsies, managing director, economist, and chief strategist of JLL, will deliver a global economic forecast for 2017 and beyond. Heidi Bray of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' U.S. and Global Customs Compliance Office will discuss the ever-changing government regulations affecting importers and exporters; Dale Kelly, chief of the International Trade Management Division of the U.S. Census Bureau will join her. Lenny Feldman, attorney for Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg P.A., will discuss trade security programs, and CONECT Washington Counsel Peter Friedmann will review election results and offer post-election trade projections.
On the transportation side, Trevor Lachapelle, vice president global transportation for BJ's Wholesale Club, and Michael Vaccaro, a vice president with Hyundai Merchant Marine America, will comment on the ocean freight market and how shipping alliances affect world trade. Michael DeVitto, transportation manager for L.L. Bean, will join a panel describing important new technological developments in global logistics and international supply chains. Brandon Fried, executive director of the Airforwarders Association, will examine air cargo screening and airfreight e-booking practices.
A special segment of the program will introduce U.S. Customs and Border Protection's new Boston-based director of field operations, William A. Ferrara, who now oversees CBP operations of the six-state New England region. Ferrara oversees antiterrorism, immigration, customs, agriculture, and trade programs at 17 seaports, 44 ports of entry, and at Boston Logan International Airport and six regional airports.
The Coalition of New England Companies for Trade is a nonprofit association for companies involved in international trade and/or transportation. Incorporated in 1991, CONECT serves more than 1,200 members representing over 300 U.S. companies and organizations, including major importers, exporters, and providers of related services. More information about CONECT's 15th Annual Northeast Cargo Symposium can be found at www.conect.org/event/2016NECS.