Question & Answer Memo

U.S. Department of Commerce / U.S. Commercial Service

How to Ship Products Overseas - Webinar

December 1, 2010

Questions and Answers:

Q: What is the email for a CES credit?

A: education@ncbfaa.org

Q: Will a freight forwarder help determine if I need a license? Will they check other restricted parties lists -- those I can't sell to?

A: Usually yes, but it is something that should be discussed prior to exporting.

Q: Does this presentation apply if our customers are individuals? They're talking about buyers but are these buyers companies or B2B relationships? Can they mention how this would relate if say, we sell directly online to consumers and want to ship to international destinations?

A: Whether your buyer is an end user (consumer) or business, the same licensing, regulations, foreign country import requirements, etc. generally apply.

Q: how do I find the specialist forwarder? Many forwarders will indicate they do the service which might not be their specialty.

A: Find out who your competitors are using, ask the FF what their specialization is before indicating what your industry/product is; inquire with NCBFAA.

Q: where can I find more info on Free Trade Agreements and benefits to my company?

A: A wealth of info is available at: http://www.export.gov/fta/

Q: What percent of a product must be made in the U.S. in order for it to be considered of U.S. origin?

A: It varies. Generally 51% for commercial invoice purposes, To meet various FTA criteria and qualify for those benefits, US content may differ. I would encourage you to contact 1-800-872-8723 (800-USA-TRADE) for more specific guidance.

Q: On the AES: If my individual Schedule B number is valued less than $2500 per item, but the total quantity added together per Schedule B item is more than $2500, is this still required? For example my item is valued at $1000, but I'm shipping qty. 10 of them.

A: yes, if the total shipment value is 2500 or more, AES is required.

Q: Does information apply if I want to ship individual (small/medium size packages) to foreign countries?

A: Yes, generally. There are times when a direct consumer purchase for individual use will not be subject to particular country import requirements (example cosmetics), but all shipment / licensing issues remain the same.

Q: What was the website for that certification course?

A: www.ncbfaa.org

Q: After appointing a forwarder and provided them the documentation, the forwarder later request an approval to another forwarder may vary the cost.  How should I deal with this situation? Have the forwarder has the right to make changes 

A: I am not sure I understand this question and would need additional information to answer.  There should only be one forwarder used on each side.  If at some point the forwarder determined he was unable to handle the shipment and he suggested the shipment be turned over to another forwarder; each forwarders fees will probably be different. 

Q: Again regarding EXW (ex-works) - we usually ship ex-works and check denied parties lists via MK Denial. Did I hear you say I also need to check to see if the vessel is on a list? Ours are "routed transactions where the FPPI selects the forwarder and they or the FF select the vessel 

A: There was a question asked about checking the vessel against denied parties, but I have not heard of this.  Only parties to the transactions; companies and individuals, are screened.   When taking out marine cargo insurance there is an additional premium due on any vessel over a certain age so possibly this is what the questions was referring to.

Q: After appointing a forwarder and provided them the documentation, the forwarder later request an approval to another forwarder may vary the cost.  How should I deal with this situation? Have the forwarder has the right to make changes –

A. same question as above

Q: Does this liability apply even if the carriage arrangement is FOB your warehouse and Buyer has made all arrangements? 

A: If you are not named on the ocean bill of lading you would not have liability for the general average or carriage, but will you get paid for your shipment if the cargo is not picked up?

Q: If liability is transferred to the importer at the time of shipping and the freight forwarder works for the importer, will the exporter still be liable for the documents? 

A: If this is a routed shipment and you are not named on the ocean bill of lading you would not have liability for the general average or carrier.  In a routed transaction the buyer appoints the freight forwarder and the freight forwarder prepares the required documentation upon the buyer’s instructions; however you are still the USPPI and are responsible for providing information to the forwarder so that the correct Electronic Export Information can be filed.  Also you are always responsible for adhering to the export Administration Regulations.  Here is an interesting question – what if your buyer diverts the cargo to an embargoed country?

Q: Is there general average on air freight? Any other insurance issues specific to air? 

A: There is not a “general average” type situation on air freight cargo, however the airlines do have a limit of liability.  Generally air freight premiums are slightly less than ocean freight premiums.

Q: Previously we have shipped engineering samples (product that is not yet available to the public) to end users in EMEA.  These units are provided for testing only and not for resale. However, the destination customs offices are applying additional customs duties which require our end user to have to pay the additional duty/tax before they can retrieve the package.  As the shipper, what can we do to ensure the end user will not have to pay these charges?  Note: commercial invoice specifies the device has no commercial value. 

A: This will depend on the country of import’s regulations which will vary from country to country.  Just because one country does not assess duty on samples, it doesn’t mean all do.   If the samples are being returned to the US, there may be other options.

Q: What are the contents of the proforma invoice.  Please show an example –

A: here is a great sample of a Proforma invoice 

http://www.emotrans-canada.com/forms/proforma.pdf


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