Compliance Behaviour of New Zealand Exporters with Best Practices of Supply Chain Security
Uninterrupted growth of international trade and the constant threats to global supply chains have led to the emergence of numerous voluntary compliance guidelines based on standards and compliance. Initiatives, such as, the Authorised Economic Operators is the result of the global efforts to facilitate, prevent and secure international trade against cross-border crime. The Authorised Economic Operator is an initiative of the World Customs Organisation and its member countries. Its core philosophy is developing public to private partnerships for the safety of international trade and trade facilitation. These initiatives are growing in scope with a variety of programmes developed by governments. The objective of these programmes is encouraging an ethos of voluntary compliance based on standards, best practices and self-governance. Certified firms can obtain a trusted trader status and cross-border benefits when they demonstrate that their supply chain is secure. New Zealand has its own programme called the Secure Export Scheme. While this programme is voluntary in nature, firms entering the programme are required to adopt, maintain, and comply with the standards of security for their supply chain. This thesis investigates the compliance behaviour of New Zealand exporters with the standards of security of the Secure Export Scheme. The Authorised Economic Programme is a new concept, and while there is scholarly research of other types of voluntary standards, research in this particular area is minimal. To the best of the researcher’s knowledge, this is one of the first studies to examine the compliance behaviour of firms that have been part of the programme since inception. Accordingly, this study is guided by the various views of the compliance theory and proffers a conceptual framework to delineate the different actors and factors that influence firms’ compliance behaviour. The study measured compliance and non-compliance of firms to understand the underlying patterns with specific best practices. This study contributes towards our current understanding of compliance behaviour. While, overall, the compliance of the New Zealand exporters with the best practices is high, there are some areas of concern. The study further identified that a number of firms were not compliant with certain best practices. This finding indicates that other factors, such as, the way the governing body presents its written requirements might influence the compliance behaviour with those specific best practices. The conceptual model proposed in this study lays the foundation for further research seeking to probe compliance behaviour of Authorised Economic Operators.