Understanding Export Documentation
Export documentation is a key part of export trade as certain documents acts as the proof of the ownership of the goods and other sale conditions. Most importantly, when the goods fly or sails cross border, these documents are the instruments to carry out the process in both exporting customs and importing customs. Generally, there are two kind of documentation in export business. Export sales documents and export shipment documents. Former describes who is buyer -who is seller and other conditions of sales negotiated and signed by both buyer and seller. The latter one is required to clear both exporting custom and importing custom.
In ideal case, The exporter prepares most of these documents. This work requires careful handling because any mistake in export documents can be costly for the exporter.
1. Export Sales Documents:
In export documentation, there two sales documents that formalize an export sale namely sales/purchase contract and Pro Forma Invoice. Both these two documents (almost identically) contain the buyer and seller names, product details and price, payment terms, shipment terms etc.Generally, Export contract is the full description of all kind negotiations between buyer and seller. Pro forma invoice is the concise description of important sales terms and exporter’s bank details. In situations, export is possible without possible. In that case, pro forma itself acts as sales contract.
2. Export Shipment Documents:
Simply put this way, an exporter has to clear their custom maintaining the rules and regulations of the customs. Generally customs asks a set of documents for the exporting consignment . On the other side of the story, the importer has to submit proper documents to importing customs to clear the goods. Therefore, there are two sets of documents required in export shipment: Documents to froward from clear exporting customs and documents to clear from importing customs.
i. Documents to forward from Exporting Customs:
To froward a consignment from Bangladesh custom a set documents are required. According to the Prescribed Bill of Entry and Bill of Export Form Order, 2001 issued by the NBR, following documents are to be enclosed (for all export consignments) with the Bill of Export for customs clearance:
⦁ Export L/C; if there is no export L/C, Export Contract or Purchase Order or Export Guarantee approved by the negotiating bank.
⦁ Commercial invoice containing detailed description of goods and signed by the exporter.
⦁ Packing list containing quantity, weight and packing information.
⦁ EXP form certified by Authorized Dealers (ADs) to ensure the realization of export proceeds.
⦁ Certificate of Origin of export goods (issued by EPB or Chamber of Commerce and Industry).
⦁ VAT registration certificate.
⦁ Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) issued by Income Tax Department.
ii. Documents to Clear Importing Customs:
Each country has its own set of rules and regulation of import clearance. In addition, documentary requirement might also depend on the category of product. Normally, importer mentions these documents in LC as required documents in field no. 46 A. In case of TT payment, export contract or Proforma Invoice contains the information of documents . Furthermore, these set of documents may vary in country to country and products to products. Typically the following documents are common:
⦁ Bill of Lading/Air way bill/Truck Receipt
⦁ Commercial Invoice
⦁ Packing List
⦁ Certificate of Origin
Besides these,buyers might ask other documents mainly different kind of certificates such as inspection certificate or any other certificates. For certain certifications are mandatory to import in countries for particular products. Initially, buyer and seller negotiate these requirement before sighing contract or pro-forma invoice