Step 1. Receipt of an order
The exporter has to get himself registered with various authorities like RBI, income tax authorities, etc. In addition, he has to appoint agents or distributors for collection of orders from foreign countries. Exporter receives an order from importer directly or through Indent House.
Step 2. Obtaining License and Quota
After obtaining order, exporter has to secure export license from the government. For this, he has to apply to the Export Trade Control Authority and obtain the valid license. Quota is the total quantity of goods that is permitted for exports.
Step 3. Letter of Credit
Exporter demands letter of credit from importer or sometimes importer may send it himself along with the order.
Step 4. Fixing exchange rate
Exchange rate means the rate at which the currency of one country is exchanged for the currency of another country. It fluctuates from time to time. Hence the exporter and importer fix the exchange rate mutually.
Step 5. Foreign exchange formalities
Here the exporter has to undergo certain foreign exchange formalities as laid down under exchange control regulations. According to FERA (Foreign Exchange Regulation Act of India) every exporter has to furnish a declaration in the form prescribed for this purpose.
The declaration states :-
- Foreign exchange earned by way of exports will be disposed in the manner and within the period specified by RBI.
- Negotiations of shipping documents will be through authorised dealers in foreign exchange.
- The payment for goods exported will be collected only through approved method.
Step 6. Preparation for executing the order
The exporter makes necessary arrangements for executing the order.
In this respect he performs the following activities :-
- Packing and marking of the goods as per the specifications of the importer.
- Arranging the pre-shipment inspection by the Export Inspection Agency and getting the inspection certificate from it.
- Securing insurance policy from the Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) to get protection against the credit risks.
- Obtaining a suitable marine insurance policy, consular invoice and certificate of origin, if required.
- Appointing a forwarding agent for handling the customs and forwarding activities.
Step 7. Formalities done by forwarding agent
The Forwarding Agent completes the following formalities :-
- He obtains the Customs’ Permit from the Customs Department for exporting goods.
- The Forwarding Agent discloses the details of the goods such as their nature, size, quantity, weight, etc. to the shipping company.
- The Forwarding Agent prepares a Shipping Bill.
- The Forwarding Agent prepares two copies of the dock challans and pays the dock dues.
- The Captain of the ship gets the goods loaded on the ship on the basis of the Shipping Order in the presence of customer officers.
- When the goods are loaded on the ship, the Mate (Vice Captain or the Captain) issues a receipt, called Mate’s or Captain’s Receipt.
Step 8. Bill of Lading
The exporter approaches the shipping company, presents the Mate’s Receipt and in exchange receives a document called Bill of Lading. It is an official receipt given by the shipping company as an acknowledgement of the receipt of goods to be transported to the port of destination. It is also a contract for the carriage of goods. It gives full description of goods loaded on the ship, name of the port of destination, etc.
Step 9. Shipment advice to importer
The exporter sends Shipment Advice to the importer informing him about the dispatch of the goods. He sends a copy of packing list, commercial invoice and a non-negotiable copy of the Bill of Lading, along with the Advice Note.
Step 10. Presentation of documents to the bank
The exporter confirms that he has secured a complete set of the shipping documents namely, the Bill of Lading, Marine Insurance Policy, Certificate of Origin, the Consular Invoice and the Commercial Invoice. He then draws Bill of Exchange on the basis of the commercial invoice. The Bill of Exchange accompanied by these documents is called Documentary Bill of Exchange. Such a bill may be a D/P (Documents against payment) bill or D/A (Documents against Acceptance) bill. The exporter hands over the documnetary bill to his bank.
Step 11. Realisation of export proceeds
For realisation of export proceeds, the exporter has to undergo certain banking formalities. Generally he receives payment in foreign currency by bill of exchange or by bank draft.
Step 12. Follow up
After the sales, exporter should always have a follow-up, to find out buyer’s reactions towards the goods. Such follow up builds goodwill and the exporter can get more and more orders in future.