Services for Traders
International trade transactions – importing and exporting – can be complex. Imports and exports of food, plant and animal products must meet sanitary and phyto-sanitary requirements. Intellectual property ownership rights (e.g., patents, trademarks, copyrights and industrial designs) are enforced at the border. Arranging international transport of goods can also be complicated as there are many different transport modes and service providers available depending on the type goods, required delivery time, and cost considerations. The financing and insurance of trade transactions can also be complicated.
Of course, it is always possible for an importer or exporter to deal directly with Customs and other border agencies and also to arrange shipping directly with transport companies such as trucking firms, maritime shippers and air carriers, insurance firms and banks. But this requires a level of expertise about border procedures and shipping and financial arrangements that the average importer or exporter usually does not possess. Fortunately, trade and transport specialists such as customs brokers and freight forwarders and the trade finance department of banks and insurance firms are available to assist with the planning and execution of trade transactions.