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CAP/IBAP administration - without tears!

CAP/IBAP Administration - Without Tears!

Throughout Europe today there will probably be over 25,000 food and drink companies either coping manually with time consuming details of Common Agricultural Policy administration, or contracting out of the task to agents or their accountants or, in frustration, ignoring the problem altogether!

However great the frustration, the financial importance of refunds and levies under CAP policy is frequently substantial and a significant factor in the cash position of a company. It is not uncommon, for example, for refunds to represent 10 percent or more of factory cost in some food sectors.

It is also true that for many companies with a wide range of products, with complex recipes and many markets both inside and outside the EEC, the company's management are left in the dark about how much money the company owes or is owed by IBAP at any time.

As so often happens in the complex world of exporting, the answer lies in the computer!

International Software Marketing Ltd, a company specialising in the management of exporting, has just launched a new dedicated software program that makes CAP/IBAP (Interventional Board for Agricultural Produce) administration a simple, rapid and controllable function. In a nutshell it produces your documentation, automatically handles your calculations of refunds and levies, and produces detailed reports for management.

CAP Management can be operated on a PC, either linked to other software within a company, or as a stand-alone operation within the export or accounts functions, thus avoiding the involvement of data processing staff and programming development costs.

The CAP Management system holds all data and information relevant to food exportation and to IBAP administration in one comprehensive database. Apart from shipment information on each customer, the database retains for instant use a mass of detail, including:

Recipe and ingredient codes and descriptions, with recipe structures;

Customs, Export Refund and MCA (Monetary Compensatory Amounts) codes and descriptions;

Refund Rates by ingredient code, by Refund or Customs Commodity Codes and by country of destination;

MCA/ACA (Accessory Compensatory Amounts) Rates by code and country of destination (it is recognised that MCA's will disappear for intracommunity trade in 1993.

Since much of this information is often very sensitive, the software system provides for a structured security system, only allowing access to specified parts of the database to particular users.

Whether a company operates LEC (Local Export Council) or non LEC exports, or both, the system will produce the relevant documentation (C1220, 1221, 1226, 1226A, 1227), as a result either of direct input or of drawing data from another order processing and documentation system. The completed forms are printed on to plain paper through a laser printer, saving time and money and ensuring complete accuracy.

As all the shipment information for each customer is reproduced automatically on each document, the danger of errors and omissions is eliminated, avoiding shipping delays and angry customers.

Automatically and immediately, the CAP Management system will calculate all monetary amounts against each shipment or schedule number, and produce a report showing how the refund/levy calculations have been made.

One of the country's leading manufacturing and exporting companies, who are already using the system, claim that the benefits of the system in terms of cash control are outstanding, and that calculations of refunds and levies that would have taken an hour or more manually are now done within seconds as part of the routine.

Apart from the obvious benefits in terms of time, lower costs and accuracy, the CAP Management system provides detailed control for management in a way that would be impossible with manual administration. Immediately available, at any time, are a series of reports, such as Payments Made, Payments Due, Payments Variance, showing clearly how much is due to, or due from, IBAP on each shipment or schedule. Such documents will make discussions with customs and IBAP auditors a pleasure!

This system therefore provides its own credit control/bought ledger facility, making it easy to check and allocate all payments made and payments received. A special audit trail function also allows individual cases to be investigated, thus eliminating those time- consuming and irritating discrepancies and disputes that can drag on for years.

From the financial director's point of view, a company's cash position can be determined at any moment, removing the uncertainty over sums of money that can sometimes amount to hundreds of thousands of pounds for large companies. Actual cash flow should also be improved.

The CAP Management system from ISM also provides an exciting bonus for the marketing director! As the monetary amounts can be displayed by ingredient within a recipe, the financial impact of changing the percentage content of an ingredient is instantly available. So the financial gain to be achieved by increasing the sugar content of a fudge cake destined for the Middle East, for example, may be measured in seconds.

The idea of fine tuning the profitability of products in line with CAP/IBAP refunds and levies according to the market destination is perhaps a new one-but it is a free bonus from the ISM software package!

There is no doubt that in terms of a reduced administrative burden, of better cash control and of long term profits, the CAP Management system will be a 'dream come true' for many companies throughout the EEC.

International Software Marketing Ltd are to be found at Charleswood Place, East Grinstead, West Sussex, tel: 0342 324117.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Food Trade Press Ltd.
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Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:60 Years of Food Trade Review: 1931-1991; Common Agricultural Policy, Interventional Board for Agricultural Produce
Publication:Food Trade Review
Date:Oct 1, 1991
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