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Trade has been a part of human life for centuries. And with rising globalisation, we are seeing a shrinking of borders. This has increased trade and boosted jobs and business opportunities that contribute to economic growth – thus answering the question of what is the importance of exports. All this happens when a business exports products across borders to help strengthen its bottom line and develop stronger relationships with customers.

However, exports can be quite complicated areas of business to deal with and they often require the help of a specialist. In this article, we will cover the importance and benefits of an export documentation partner as well as the types of documentation you can expect to deal with when exporting. Let’s find out more.

What does an export documentation partner do?

If you are a business owner who is exporting products to different territories, you will know that there are many prior considerations that must be taken into account. Often, this is a difficult terrain to navigate by yourself and the help of an export documentation partner is essential. These specialists help to prepare all the export documents that are required to ship your products abroad.

Depending on the size of your company and the quantity of exports it carries out, this specialist will be involved with your internal teams that include sales, customer service, logistics, warehouse personnel and your external partners including freight forwarders, carriers, brokers and others. With all this in mind, it’s clear that a lot goes into exporting products and you need a partner to assist you. For example, such a specialist will be able to help you with functions and tasks that include the following:

  • Communicate and negotiate with freight forwarders and carriers
  • Obtain the original and rated bills of lading on time with accurate information
  • Communicate with all the relevant internal and external departments
  • Correspond with customers regarding shipments
  • Create, assemble and submit applicable export documents per country laws and regulations.
  • Maintain export files and keep shipping records up-to-date and accurate
  • Research demurrage and detention related export claims in a timely manner
  • Assist with invoice creation
  • Follow up with suppliers and vendors to ensure timely delivery of all documents
  • Double-check commercial documents
  • Follow up on each export shipment and keep track of departure and arrival dates

Advantages of working with an experienced export partner

With all the responsibilities they have and the work they put into ensuring your exports are fully and accurately prepared for the entire shipment process, you will be able to enjoy numerous benefits, among which include:

Developing a solid export strategy that will factor in your market analysis, competitor assessment, logistics, etc.
Processing your shipments with care, professionalism and efficiency
Training your team in any of the related processes and documentation

What is the documentation required for export?

Whether you would like to find out more about the documents needed to export from Spain or to export within the European Union, there is some standard documentation that you should know about which needs to be prepared with every single shipment that you send over. Yes, this will depend on your parcels’ size, nature and quantity as well as the laws and regulations of the source and target country. However, many of the most important documents when it comes to shipping abroad are quite similar. That’s why the requirements to export from Spain include the following documentation types:

  • Commercial invoice: this is issued to a buyer prior to the parcel’s shipment. It provides a detailed summary of the shipment and the terms of sale.
  • Bill of lading: this is a legal document for export trade and is issued between the person shipping and the shipping company. It enables the shipping company to carry out the shipment.
  • Air waybill: this document works similar to an ocean bill of lading and the third party carrier assumes responsibility from the time of receiving the parcel to delivery. It is non-negotiable.
  • Certificate of origin (COO): this helps to verify a product’s country of origin. It shows where a product was produced, manufactured and processed.
  • Export and import licence: these are special licences that enable exporters to import or export goods that are classified as restricted.
  • Export packing list: this is where goods are properly stated and any special requirements are specified to ensure accurate processing and handling of the parcel while on the move.
  • Insurance certificate: this is proof that the shipment has been insured in the event of loss or damage. This is assurance that they will be compensated for goods if they fail to reach their destination.
  • Inspection certificate: this is a professional verification of the contents of your shipment.
  • Pro forma invoice: this is a negotiating tool used by buyers and sellers prior to an export. It will eventually become the final commercial invoice when goods are cleared through customs in the importing country.
  • Commercial invoice: also a document that is exchanged between a buyer and a seller, it indicates that goods are being sold. It is a key determinant of the customs duties that need to be paid.
  • Other documentation required: of course, the list above is an indication of the most common documents required in shipments. However, there are others and these include a letter or credit, dangerous goods form, warehouse/dock receipt, etc.

It must be noted that the specific documentation required will depend on how the goods will be shipped (e.g. ocean or air freight), the destination and the type of goods involved.

When you need expert and professional help or an international courier service from Barcelona, you can always count on DRG Solutions to help you with all your shipping needs. The importance of exports and imports cannot be overstated and it requires a professional partner to help you reach your maximum business potential and objectives. Simply reach out to us for any assistance you may need and our team will be more than happy to be of service.