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Boat builder buying group the United Marine Manufacturers Association has launched a major purchasing program for its members, it said recently.
The new system was approved by the UMMA Advisory Board and its Purchasing Committee at their December planning meeting in Raleigh, N.C., and it will take effect immediately, resulting in a review of all of its program categories prior to the 2006 model year. Kent Wooldridge, UMMA president, said that because of UMMA’s size and diversity, it has always been difficult to fully consolidate the purchasing power of its membership.
“After considering various alternatives, we have formalized a new purchasing committee structure, which secures the commitment of 20 of our largest members,” Wooldridge said. “We have studied alternatives for some time and believe that the combination of incentives for supplier support, coupled with penalties for non-compliance, will allow UMMA to narrow its focus to a more limited supplier base, while increasing all of our member’s support for our approved suppliers.”
Program implementation will begin with the first of a series of requests for quotations in early January, with final proposals from selected suppliers presented to the purchasing committee beginning in late January.

The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) is warning U.S. boat builders that the Canadian government on November 23 announced the possibility of an imposition of a 100% surtax on U.S. manufactured recreational boats. The surtax would apply to imported products from the U.S., including pleasure vessels ranging from yachts to canoes.
The NMMA says the surtax is retaliation for the Byrd Amendment, a law that allows duties collected from antidumping and countervailing to be given to U.S. firms that petition for tax relief. The Byrd Amendment, named after Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV), was challenged by a number of countries in the World Trade Organization (WTO). The WTO ruled that the amendment violates their trade agreements and member countries can retaliate against the U.S. Canada also intends to levy tariffs on many other imported U.S. goods besides boats.
The Canadian government is soliciting comments on the proposed tariffs until December 20, 2004. NMMA is asking its members to contact their dealers in Canada and urge them to register their opposition.
Visit the NMMA Government Relations web site, http://www.nmma.org/government/issueadvocacy/index.asp?catid=234 for more information and to learn how to file comments.

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