Important Documents Required in an Export Process

Any export process requires certain rules and regulations to be followed which are required by the law of the land. These regulations require a lot a documents for custom clearance by the authorities. This means that businesses engaged in exporting and importing goods to and from the country need to clear specific customs barriers as outlined by their respective governments.

The export process usually involves preparing documents that may be submitted electronically or physically with the consignment. This helps concerned authorities to calculate taxes and duties that will be levied on the cargo. The type of documents required for customs clearance usually depends on the type of goods being shipped. It may also vary depending on the country of origin and the destination of the cargo. However, as a thumb rule, there are a set of general documents that most businesses need to comply with when importing or exporting goods.

List of Documents required for Exports Customs Clearance

  • Enquiry
  • Proforma Invoice
  • Customs Packing List
  • Country of Origin or COO Certificate
  • Commercial Invoice
  • Bill of Lading
  • Letter of Credit
  • Bill of Exchange

1. Enquiry: An inquiry is a request from the prospective buyer to keep him informed of the terms and conditions of sale. Any export inquiry has to be attended with promptness and meticulous care.

2. Proforma Invoice: A pro forma invoice is a quotation prepared in the format of an invoice; it is the preferred method in the exporting business. A quotation describes the product, states a price for it, sets the time of shipment, and specifies the terms of sale and terms of payment.

3. Custom Packing List: Customs Packing List is an inventory of the contents of your consignment. It includes information required for international customs, such as the size and number of your parcels, and an itemized breakdown of your consignment contents. It is also used to update your tracking information.

4. Country of Origin or COO Certificate: A Certificate of Origin is issued by both the Indian Chamber of Commerce as well as Trade Promotion Council of India. This certificate issued by these two bodies is essential for exporters in India to prove that the commodities being exported are of Indian origin.

5. Commercial Invoice: A commercial invoice is required for any international shipment which carries a commercial value to fulfil all regulations under the export/import country's customs regulation. The document is to be prepared when the exporter is ready to ship the goods.

6. Bill of Lading: The bill of lading (BL) signifies the successful completion of trade on the receipt of consignment. Fundamentally, the transportation company issues this document with a clear depiction of the agreement between the shipper and the company regarding the deal.

7. Letter of Credit: An Export Letter of Credit, which is also referred to as documentary credit, is a contractual agreement on the part of the issuing bank, on behalf of an importer, promising to pay the beneficiary or exporter provided conditions specified in the Letter of Credit have been satisfied.

8. Bill of Exchange: A bill of exchange is an unconditional order in. defined. writing, addressed by one person to another, signed by the person giving it, requiring the person to whom it is addressed to pay on demand, or at a fixed or determinable future time, a certain sum in money to or to the order of a specified person, or to bearer.