Logistics Overview

When shipping a product overseas as part of a commercial transaction, the exporter must be aware of packing, labeling, documentation, and insurance requirements. Let us help you get things moving!

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Documentation

Export documentation is considerably more detailed than standard domestic sale invoices.  Common export documents are: commercial invoice, packing list, pro forma invoice, bill of lading, certificate of origin, and Electronic Export Information (EEI) for shipments over $2,500.

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Certificates of Origin

A Certificate of Origin may be required to export to certain countries, or to claim preferential treatment under a Free Trade Agreement. 

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Shipping

International freignt forwarders typically assist U.S. exporters with export documentation.  Transportation documents like the bill of lading and electronic export  information (EEI) are often used by U.S. and foreign customs officials to verify possession of goods.     

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Export Licenses

Most U.S. exports do not require a license to be sold overseas. Defense articles, regulated by the State Department and dual use articles regulated by the Department of Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security issue export license certificates which is a government authorization of a specific good, in a specific quantity, going to a particular destination. 

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Tariffs and Import Fees

A tax levied by governments on the value of an imported product is called a tariff or duty.  Customs fees are often charged in addition to a tariff.  The tariff and other fees are collected at the time a product clears customs in the foreign port. Tariffs increase the cost of your product to the foreign buyer and may affect your competitiveness in the market.
 

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Harmonized System & Schedule B

The international Harmonized System classifies products by code in order to measure imports and exports.  

Know your 6-digit code before you export!  Based on the Harmonized System, Schedule B classifies products with internationally harmonized 6 digits to ease the flow of goods across borders.  

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