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WTDC June 15 News: Rollbacks to US-Cuba Policy, PortMiami welcomes largest ship

Posted on June 15th, 2017 at 11:29 am





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WTDC is a Foreign Trade Zone and Logistics Company, family owned and operated by the Gazitua family proudly celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2017. We are a full service logistics company specializing in international distribution and global transportation
management. We provide transportation services via Road, Rail, Air or Ocean.
Temperature Controlled FTZ Warehousing
Foreign Trade Zone Warehousing & Distribution (FTZ 281-4)
U.S. Customs Bonded Warehousing & Distribution
Container Freight Station (CFS)
Domestic Transportation
In-Bond Export Consolidator (IBEC)
Licensed FMC, NVOCC, and IAC
Heavy Lift, packing & crating, vehicle loading, and public warehouse
Consulting Services: FTZ, Bonded Warehousing, Duty Drawback, FDA, etc.

June 15, 2017   Share



Rollbacks expected to US-Cuba policy during Trump announcement on Friday


President Trump is scheduled to speak in Miami's Little Havana on Friday where most expect an announcement to rollback advances made to U.S.-Cuba relations relating to trade and tourism made during the Obama administration.


As timing would have it, WTDC handled a container to Cuba this week for the 4th of July celebration at the US Embassy in Havana. With expected changes on the way, this shipment may very well mark the end of U.S. companies exploring business opportunities on the island for the near future.


The Gazitua family has visited the island seven times; five times to examine the logistics infrastructure on the island since President Obama made the announcement to open relations with Cuba, and twice for religious pilgrimages, one to see Pope Benedict and the other to see Pope Francis. Mr. Ralph L. Gazitua, WTDC Chairman, was among the few to witness the raising of the American Flag at the US Embassy in Havana.



Mr. Gazitua pictured with U.S. Marines at the home of U.S. Ambassador Jeffrey DeLaurentis in Havana, celebrating the raising of the American flag at the U.S. Embassy in Havana, August 14, 2015.




WTDC's Safety & Security Committee


In response to a number of unfortunate and tragic recent events, Ralph L. Gazitua, WTDC Chairman & MDPD Chaplain, was concerned for the safety of his staff and family. He decided to start WTDC's Safety & Security Committee (SSC). This committee is intended not just for WTDC employees, but for any of our colleagues who would like more information on how to respond to an emergency situation.

WTDC has organized support from Miami Dade Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security, which has volunteered one of its officers to inform and train those interested in how to respond to an Active Shooter Scenario.

If you would like to RSVP to join us for this seminar, or for additional information, please click here. A complimentary lunch will be provided.


Active Shooter Scenario led by Miami Dade Police Department & Department of Homeland Security, a WTDC Safety and Security Seminar

  -Tuesday, June 20, 2017

  -12 pm

  -WTDC, Suite N-22, 2801 NW 74th Ave

  -Miami, FL 33122



Mr. Gazitua attended a 6 hour training in Urban Combat Skills, Live Ammo, and Tactical Pistol Training led by NRA Instructor Joseph Yeampierre of Allstate Training Academy at the  Florida Gun Center.



Port Miami welcomes largest ship to date


This week the Maersk Shanghai docks in PortMiami. The Maersk Shanghai, towering at over 1,063 ft long and 159 ft wide,  would have not been able to sail through PortMiami before the recent widening and dredging of its shipping channel.


For More on the topic, read the article "Biggest Container Ship Ever To Call At a Florida Port Arrives At PortMiami" by Mimi Whitefield in the Miami Herald published on June 14th, 2017.

Photo:CM Guerrero, Miami Herald


WTDC June 15 News: Rollbacks to US-Cuba Policy, PortMiami welcomes largest ship - Read More

WTDC May 16 News: Three Directors, One Stage; WTDC New Interns; Record Setting Ship sails through Panama Canal

Posted on May 16th, 2017 at 3:51 pm


Three Directors, One Stage


On May 5, WTDC attended WorldCity's 'World Trade Month Kick-off Luncheon' which was held at Coral Gables Country Club. More than 200 people listened as three of South Florida's port directors took the stage.


Juan M. Kuryla, PortMiami Director and Chief Executive, Emilio Gonzalez, Aviation Director and CEO of Miami International Airport, and Steven Cernak, Chief Executive and Port Director for Port Everglades each gave updates and their comments seem to be in accordance with Ken Roberts, President of WorldCity, who said  trade through South Florida seems to be “back on good footing.”


Miami Herald: 'After a four year slide, South Florida trade prospects improving' by Mimi Whitefield. May 5, 2017.



PortMiami Twitter



WTDC Welcomes Elin Ekdahl,

Sales & Marketing Intern



WTDC Intern Elin Ekdahl recently joined our Sales & Marketing team for a Summer Internship. Originally from Sweden, Elin moved to the USA to attend Barry University, where she is currently a  Junior majoring in International Business. She is also a starter for their Women's Basketball team. Welcome to WTDC Elin!


Click to Visit Barry University Career Services



WTDC Welcomes Matias Perez-Albela, Operations Intern



WTDC welcomes Matias Perez-Albela to the team! Matias, originally from Peru, is completing an Internship with WTDC Operations and is a junior at FIU, double majoring in Finance and Logistics & Supply Chain Management. We're looking forward to good things from Matias!


Click to visit FIU Career Services



Record setting ship sails through Panama Canal and up East Coast


The Chinese vessel COSCO Development became the largest 'Neopanamax' ship to traverse the Panama Canal during the first week of May. At 1200 feet long and with an enormous capacity of 13,092 TEUs (1 TEU = 20 foot container equivalent), the COSCO vessel is 300 feet longer and has a can hold 8,000 more TEUs than vessels passing through the original canal.


Miami Herald: 'Big-ship era dawns for East Coast as record-setting ship transits Panama Canal' by Mimi Whitefield. May 4, 2017.



Panama Canal Authority



WTDC Chairman, Guest Speaking at Christian Chamber of Greater Miami

May 16th, Ralph L. Gazitua, WTDC Chairman is guest speaking at the Christian Chamber of Greater Miami.


Mr. Gazitua was ordained a deacon at St. Mary's Cathedral by Archbishop Edward A. McCarthy 30 years ago, on May 2, 1987. Deacon Gazitua has balanced his spiritual responsibilities as deacon with his commitments to his family and his career.


Mr. Gazitua is a successful businessman and community leader.  He is also well known for his religious service to his church.


Deacon Gazitua is engaged in several church ministries including the Law Enforcement and Firefighters (LEAF) Emmaus. His role in detention ministry at Everglades Correctional, where he leads RCIA and Liturgy of the Word for inmates each week, led to his assignment as Chaplain to Miami-Dade Police Department. 


The Gazitua family owns and operates WTDC, a Foreign Trade Zone and Logistics company that celebrated its 40th anniversary this March. Ralph is WTDC's Chairman and his two sons are also involved in the company: Luis Andre Gazitua is Legal Counsel and operates his own law firm Gazitua Letelier PA, and Sean P. Gazitua was promoted this year as WTDC's President & CEO.


Over his decorated professional career, Ralph has held appointments to numerous boards including The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County Trust, Beacon Council, FIU President's Council, Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, and serves currently as Miami Dade College's Chair for Supply Chain Management Advisory Council, and is an inductee of the Miami-Dade College Hall of Fame.



WTDC May 16 News: Three Directors, One Stage; WTDC New Interns; Record Setting Ship sails through Panama Canal - Read More

WTDC May 2 News: PortMiami Update, Ralph L. Gazitua 30 Year Deacon Anniversary, WTDC Attends Netherlands Seminar

Posted on May 2nd, 2017 at 1:38 pm

PortMiami traffic with Asia rises 11%

Bolstered by an increase of container traffic as a result of infrastructure improvements at PortMiami (See our previous article on Big Ship Ready) as well as traffic that continued with the port following resolution of West Coast labor disputes, PortMiami reported an 11% volume growth with Asia in 2016. As reported in MiamiToday, PortMiami has benefited from the larger PostPanamax ships that now move through the expanded Panama Canal and PortMiami now sees 35% of its trade volume with Asia.


One interesting future limitation brought up in the article concerns planned construction to bridges in New York. Limits to the height of the vessels New York can receive could adversely affect PortMiami, as many of the vessels that call Miami also call New York.

To read more from the April 18, 2017 article in the Miami Today by Camila Cepero “PortMiami traffic with Asia rises 11%” click here.





WTDC Chairman, Ralph L. Gazitua, commemorates 30th anniversary of Ordination


On May 2, 1987, Saint John Neumann parishioner Ralph Luis Gazitua was ordained a deacon at St. Mary’s Cathedral by Archbishop Edward A. McCarthy. Archbishop McCarthy assigned Deacon Gazitua to assist Fr. Michael Hickey, founding pastor of SJN, with the sacraments and ministry of the parish and to serve as Chaplain for detention ministry. For the past 30 years, Deacon Gazitua has balanced his spiritual responsibilities as deacon with his commitments to his family and his career. 

May 2nd, 2017, Deacon Gazitua proudly celebrates his 30th year as the Deacon of the Archdiocese of Miami. Congratulations from your WTDC family, Ralph!



Please click here to read the full artilcle




WTDC Welcomes Rose Marie Diaz, Customer Service Representative, to the team!



Rose Marie Diaz started with WTDC late March and has been working in WTDC Operations and Customer service.


Keep up the good work!





WTDC Attends Netherlands Logistics Seminar

WTDC attended the Netherlands Logistics Seminar Luncheon on April 27th aboard the Stad Amsterdam, a clipper harkening back to the Dutch legacy as shippers of tea and spices.


The Stad Amsterdam was modeled after a 19th century clipper but with all the amenities of a modern ship. The vessel was launched in 2000 and circumnavigated the globe in 2009. To read more about the Stad Amsterdam, click here.


After a welcome by Mrs. Nathalie Olijslager, Consul General of the Netherlands, a logistics introduction was given by Vice Mayor Adam Elzakalai of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. Joseph Marino and Robert Rozek, KLM Cargo on Pharma Gateway then demonstrated their cold-chain capabilities for pharmaceuticals using Schiphol Amsterdam Airport. Another presentation by Rene de Koning of OneLogistics highlighted how the Dutch designed an affordable, agile, compliant and scalable F-35 / Joint Strike Fighter sustainment supply chain for the European region.





L to R: Vice Mayor Adam Elzakalai of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. Mrs. Nathalie Olijslager, Consul General of the Netherlands,  and Moritz Kuhlenbäumer, Captain Clipper Stad Amsterdam.





Buzz Drink of the Week:
the Mint Julep!

While the forecast for this weekend's Kentucky Derby calls for thunder snow (yikes!), it inevitably also calls for plenty of the Kentucky Derby's signature drink: the Mint Julep. The Mint Julep is a simple recipe of bourbon whiskey (from Kentucky of course!), and muddled mint, sugar, and water over ice, preferably in a frosted metal cup.


Picture courtesy of Honestly Yum


Here’s a great article from Thumbtack Editors posted on April 27th, 2017; “Patio Party Pleasers: The Mint Julep.”





Celebrate Florida trade opportunities during Florida World Trade Month 2017


Each May, The Florida Chamber of Commerce, World Trade Center Miami, and Enterprise Florida host a month long series of educational seminars and business networking events to display Florida's participation in World Trade Month.


The events kick off with tours of PortMiami on Wednesday and then Friday's  WorldCity ‘World Trade Month Annual Kick-off Luncheon’ presented by World City in which all 3 port directors will share the stage. May 3rd is the last day to register for Friday's event. Expect to see WTDC there!


Here is the registration link for all interested:


WTDC May 2 News: PortMiami Update, Ralph L. Gazitua 30 Year Deacon Anniversary, WTDC Attends Netherlands Seminar - Read More

WTDC Newsletter April 18; WTDC in IAADFS Slideshow, WTDC Sponsors MDC Students, WTDC intern program, US CUBA update

Posted on April 18th, 2017 at 5:09 pm

WTDC Featured in IAADFS official photo slideshow

Check out the official photo slideshow from IAADFS Duty Free Show of the Americas 2017. WTDC President & CEO, Sean Gazitua, and WTDC Chairman, Ralph L. Gazitua made a cameo!

Click here to view the full slideshow.





WTDC Sponsors two scholarships for MDC Students


On April 5th, Ralph L. Gazitua, WTDC Chairman, presented $1000 scholarships to Brianna Gutierrez and Francisco Caraballo of Miami-Dade College (MDC).


Both students attended MDC speaking engagements by Mr. Gazitua and participated in an essay contest he announced in each one. The contest winner would best recap the key points of the speech in an essay submitted to WTDC. We are happy to say both essays really resonated with Mr. Gazitua and the stories of the winners moved us.






WTDC Internship Program: Now taking applications for summer internships


Do you know a college student looking for an Internship? WTDC is currently seeking college students who would like to get their foot in the door of our fast-moving logistics industry. We have Internship openings in our Operations as well as our Sales and Marketing department (click here for more information). If would like to recommend someone or refer a student to apply directly, please send resume and contact info to WTDC Office Manager Vera Gazitua (Click here to email).


Internship Update: Last week marked the end of FIU student Kevin Maloy’s Internship with WTDC. Kevin assisted in WTDC Sales and Marketing as an intern from October 2016 to April 2017. We wish him the best of luck!



Aviation impact on Miami-Dade County



From air cargo and passenger services to repair parts and service, the aviation and aerospace industries continue to have a significant impact on Miami-Dade County. Miami Herald writer Joseph Mann recently wrote a great article touching on the many ways aviation provides for our community.

Below is an excerpt from the article:

“Building on its early 20th century history as a commercial and military flight center, Miami is thrusting deeper into the aviation cosmos, increasing its presence as an international nexus for aviation and aerospace services. In the past five years, local aviation-sector jobs have grown from a total of $1.2 billion in payroll to $2 billion, now accounting for one of every four local jobs.”



To read more from the April 2nd, 2017 article in the Miami Herald by Joseph A. Mann Jr, click here.




USA & Cuba Relations Update:

OFAC licenses continue to be issued in Trump administration


To date, no major changes have been made to U.S-Cuba policy by the Trump administration to rollback changes made during the Obama administration. A recent article in the Miami Herald listed examples of U.S. companies that have received special permission to operate on the island. U.S.-based broadcast and video facility company Cuba International Network, was recently awarded an OFAC (Office of Foreign Assets Control) license allowing them to do business with Cuban radio and television company RVA.

To read more from the April 4, 2017 article in the Miami Herald by Nora Gámez Torres “Trump administration continues to issue OFAC licenses authorizing business with Cuba.”


To read more from the April 4th, 2017 article in the Miami Herald by Nora Gamez Torres, click here.

WTDC Newsletter April 18; WTDC in IAADFS Slideshow, WTDC Sponsors MDC Students, WTDC intern program, US CUBA update - Read More

WTDC March 31st: WTDC attends IAADFS Duty Free Show ; Lunch with Dr. Haass ; FEC to be acquired by Grupo Mexico

Posted on March 31st, 2017 at 1:35 pm

WTDC Attends 2017 IAADFS Duty Free Show of the Americas


WTDC Chairman Ralph L. Gazitua (Pictured right, below) and WTDC President & CEO Sean P. Gazitua (Pictured left, below), attended the 2017 IAADFS Duty Free Show in Orlando, FL.

“A very fruitful & fun event, my father and I enjoy attending every year,” commented Sean P. Gazitua.


Also below, WTDC President and CEO featured in the Travel Markets Insider special edition for IAADFS Duty Free Show of the Americas!







New book launch for  Dr. Richard Haass at MDC



WTDC Chairman Ralph L. Gazitua was invited by Miami Dade College President Eduardo J. Padrón to a private lunch with the President of the Council on Foreign Relations, Dr. Richard N. Haass, to discuss Dr. Haass' new book 'A World in Disarray: American Foreign Policy and the Crisis of the Old Order'.

Dr. Haass has been the president of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) since 2003. Before becoming CFR President, he was the Director of policy planning for the Department of State, where he was a principal adviser to Secretary of State Colin Powell. Dr. Haass has published multiple books on American Foreign Policy and countless great articles.


Left, Ralph L. Gazitua. Right, Dr. Richard Haas



Interested in Dr. Haass’ work? Click below to read more:

“World Order 2.0: The Case for Sovereign Obligation,” Foreign Affairs, January/February 2017

“What the U.S. Must Do About Russia,” Time.com, February 18, 2017.

“The Politics of Historicide,” Project Syndicate, February 24, 2017.





Sean P. Gazitua Featured in FIU Magazine


A recent FIU Magazine article highlighting the FIU chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity featured comments from WTDC's President & CEO Sean P. Gazitua.

From the article:

“My dad always said, ‘Sound mind, sound body. You need to have a balanced life,’” said SigEp alumnus Sean Gazitua ’04, who is now president and CEO of WTDC, a logistics and foreign trade zone business in Miami. This advice is what sparked his connection with SigEp.


During his time at FIU, Gazitua served on SigEp’s executive board, and helped coordinate the fraternity’s philanthropic events, including an annual wrestling marathon. Now, he serves on the fraternity’s Alumni Volunteer Council, coordinating the organizations’ alumni events.


“We really try to bring everyone back to the university, because at the end of the day we all got our education here,” Gazitua said.”

Click the image or here for the full article:





FIU International Business Honor Society Students return from India Spring Break Service!


Back in October 2016, WTDC held an essay contest for FIU IBHS Students, the winner would be he who best reflected on his mission and personal values. The winner of the essay was awarded $1000 in scholarship funds to help them participate in the annual IBHS service trip.

â??WTDC announced the award to Andrea Alonso, who just returned from their IBHS Spring Break Service trip to India, where the Honor Society students helped Women entrepreneurs create a sustainable income though craftwork.

Below images from the trip and a thank you letter from the students.

If you would like to learn more about the service mission, here is a link to a letter from Sofia Garcia, former WTDC Intern and FIU IBHS member.









Florida East Coast Railway to be acquired by Grupo Mexico

Big news for the transportation industry, Florida East Coast Railway (FEC), Jacksonville based railroad, is to be acquired by Grupo Mexico Transportes S.A de C.V. (GMXT).

Below is an excerpt from article published by Jeff Berman in ‘Logistics Management’ Magazine on March 28th:


"Earlier today, the Florida East Coast Railway (FEC) and GMéxico Transportes S.A. de C.V.(GMXT), the transportation unit of Mexico City, Mexico-based miner Grupo Mexico, announced that they have entered into an agreement in which GMXT will acquire FEC in an all-cash transaction, which is expected to close subject to satisfaction of closing conditions.


Various reports said the sale price was $2.1 billion, with Reuters reporting that Grupo Mexico financed the purchase from FEC owner Fortress Investment Group with $1.75 billion in debt and $350 million in capital, based on a company statement for the Mexican stock exchange.”

Logistics Management: 'Florida East Coast Railway to be acquired by Grupo Mexico'â??

WTDC March 31st: WTDC attends IAADFS Duty Free Show ; Lunch with Dr. Haass ; FEC to be acquired by Grupo Mexico - Read More

WTDC March 15 Newsletter: WTDC DFNI; Cuba A Year in Review; MDC Honor Society Scholarship; MDP Invocation & Benediction

Posted on March 16th, 2017 at 9:52 am

WTDC: 40 years in business!


WTDC, a Foreign Trade Zone and Logistics company in Miami, FL, is celebrating its 40th anniversary of business with the promotion of Sean P. Gazitua as President & CEO. Founded by the Gazitua family on March 8, 1977, WTDC began as a U.S. Customs General Order Warehouse. WTDC has now evolved into a full service Foreign Trade Zone and Logistics Company, specializing in inventory management. 


Thank you for being part of our 40 year history, we look forward to many more!




Duty-Free News International features WTDC's Sean Gazitua


The recent promotion of Sean P. Gazitua to WTDC President & CEO promotion was featured in leading Duty Free & Travel Retail magazine Duty-Free News International (DFNI) last week. Special thanks to DFNI for this feature!

From the DFNI article:

“Duty-free and travel-retail industry logistics and Foreign Trade Zone company WTDC has announced the promotion of Sean P. Gazitua as president and CEO.

Gazitua developed an extensive grasp of Foreign Trade Zone Operations and Logistics Management working his way through the ranks at WTDC as operations manager, then director of Logistics, vice-president sales and marketing, and most recently as vice president.


Sean Gazitua succeeds his father, WTDC chairman Ralph L. Gazitua, as well as his uncle John Gazitua and grandfather Luis Rafael Gazitua, as the third generation of Gazitua to manage the company.” Click here to read more





Recap of GMCC event

'Cuba: A Year in Review'


On Tuesday, March 7th, WTDC Chairman Ralph L. Gazitua was a panel speaker at the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce’s event ‘Cuba: A Year in Review.’ Mr. Gazitua spoke about the regulations between the U.S. and Cuba, his experience researching business opportunities on the Island, and what the future may hold for U.S.-Cuba relations.



Scholarship for Miami Dade College Sigma Beta Delta Honor Society


On Friday, February 24, WTDC Chairman Ralph L. Gazitua was a guest speaker for Miami Dade College's Sigma Beta Delta Honor Society inauguration ceremony. He announced that he would sponsor a scholarship for a student who best reflected on the key points of his speech in an essay to be submitted to WTDC.

We are proud to announce that we have selected Brianna Gutierrez as the winner of the $1000 scholarship.

“Ms. Gutierrez’s essay showed clear demonstration for God, Family, Business and Legacy which were the Key points of my speech. I was very impressed by the accomplishments of Brianna and her family detailed in her essay,” said Ralph L. Gazitua, WTDC Chairman.




Community Involvement: Graduation ceremony for Colombian National Police trained by MDPD SWAT

WTDC Chairman and Miami-Dade Police Department Chaplain Ralph L. Gazitua gave the invocation and benediction for the graduation of the Colombian National Police’s training by MDPD’s special response team.

“It was an honor to give the invocation today for the graduation of the Colombian National Police trained by MDPD. We are blessed to have such skilled officers protecting our community. It is a great outreach program for the MDPD to share its knowledge and expertise so that other communities can benefit from having a highly skilled tactical response team,” said Mr. Gazitua.


Pictured with MDPD Director Juan Perez and the Colombian Lt. Col.



WTDC March 15 Newsletter: WTDC DFNI; Cuba A Year in Review; MDC Honor Society Scholarship; MDP Invocation & Benediction - Read More