Streamlining logistics in your target market requires a little forward planning. Understanding who is responsible for which parts of the import / export process is also vital to maintaining good relationships with your channel partners. Not only will it help you to minimise downtime associated with misunderstandings, it will ensure you’re financially prepared for your own responsibilities.
Logistics and Requirements
Incoterms® and logistics tool
This document will help you get your head around the international terms surrounding the assignment of costs and responsibilities between buyers and sellers – otherwise known as ‘Incoterms®’.
How do I clear my products for export?New Zealand Customs has detailed information about export clearance requirements on its website.
How do I protect my business against a buyer defaulting on a payment?The Export Credit Office can help you protect your business from cancelled contracts or payment defaults that are due to commercial or political events beyond your control.
I want to find out about regulations and tariffs for exportRegulations and tariffs should be one of the first things you find out before exporting. They often determine whether a market will be easy or hard for you to export to, or whether you should try to do business there at all.
Understanding regulations in your export destination is a must-do. For an introduction to what you need to think about, see our guide on understanding international compliance requirements. This includes tips on how to research regulations, as well as insights on local regulations, standards, health and safety, and dealing with local bureaucracy.
It’s a good idea to take a look at the rest of the international compliance process while you’re doing your work on regulations – see more information in our guide to understanding international compliance requirements.
If you’re planning to export food or food-related products, you should also check out the food exporting page on the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) website. MPI maintains a list of Overseas Market Access Requirements (OMARs) for New Zealand food products in different export markets – search and identify OMARs for your product online.
Tariffs can make your products more expensive and less attractive to overseas buyers, so you need to know the charges your products will attract before you commit to a new market.
You can get a big head start in finding tariff information by using the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) tariff finder or the World Trade Organisation’s tariff download facility. You can search the databases by product name, but they work best when you know the approximate Harmonised System (HS) code for your product. HS codes are used by customs authorities around the world to identify products and apply tariffs. The longer the code is, the more precisely it describes your product. The first six digits of an HS code are usually the same worldwide – after that, there can be up to eight further digits, which often vary from country to country.
New Zealand Customs can help you to find out the first six digits of your HS codes – email VOC@customs.govt.nz.
To get a longer and more precise HS code for a particular market, look up and contact the local customs authority online, or talk to a customs broker or freight forwarder who has done business in that market.