Whether you are thinking of converting your company into an importer or exporter or if you have already done so, take note of some tips taken from interviews with experts and companies. Each one of them is a piece that forms the foreign trade puzzle.
How is my company ready to export or import?
Does your company have a bilingual receptionist? Can your production chain respond to high demand peaks? Do you have a commercial team capable of facing the new challenge (travel, irregular schedules …? Do you have financial capacity to make the leap abroad? Do you have a competitive product or service? As an importer, you are looking for lasting agreements? But more important than This self-assessment is your commitment (as manager, owner or majority partner) with the decision to internationalize the company, an obsession that you must spread to the rest of the departments and staff.
Alone or in company?
In foreign trade there are three phases that determine the consolidation of the business project in the destination market. The first is commercial sales operations abroad. For this, a commercial intermediary is enough that collects the merchandise in port and markets it. The second is the cooperation with a local partner who takes care of the whole process?
Although there are brave exceptions, if it is emerging markets or developing countries, the recommendation is to start the foreign adventure accompanied. The work of a local partner will pave the way for you and avoid surprises. With a distributor or commercial agent you save the logistics structure, offices, personnel and transport. Remember that at the beginning, assessing costs is a priority.
Include a visit to fairs in your agenda
Whether as an exhibitor or as a visitor, they will allow you to know market conditions and make contacts with possible partners and suppliers. Yes. Choose well. Focus on the sectorial and professionalized ones.It is work that requires a lot of dedication at the beginning.
Familiarize yourself with the following terms. They are part of the fundamental documentation in foreign operations.
- Commercial documents. It includes the commecial invoice, pro forma invoice, certificate of origin (processed by the Chambers of Commerce) and a list of contents or parking list (description of the merchandise).
- Customs . They are the ATA and CPD Notebooks (they allow you to temporarily send goods to 75 countries); Single Administrative Document (DUA), processed by the Tax Agency; Intrastat (periodic declaration).
- Of transport . We are talking about the consignment note by road, rail, sea and air.
- Certificates . Includes insurance, health certificates, etc.
- Customs formalities. You will have to formalize the Registration in the Exporters Registry (form 036) and the VAT.
Don’t get caught or how to choose a partner
The correct choice of a partner or supplier is a key factor in the process that you have started. Trade shows are an excellent showcase to get in touch with, but be wary of those who want to close a deal on site. Before signing anything, look for information about that potential partner or supplier: company size, production, talks with companies that have worked with him, his financial solvency (in the case of a partner) and meeting deadlines (supplier).
For the association to strengthen the company, making it more competitive, it is key that the chosen partner has a good network of contacts and the ability to expand it, as well as financial stability.