Simplifying International Trade Terms-Part 1

Do you feel confused by the commonly used terms of international Trade? Below are simple explanations to some of the frequently used trade terms.

Incoterms®: Incoterms® or International Commercial Terms are a set of rules which define the responsibilities of sellers and buyers for the delivery of goods under sales contracts for domestic and international trade. These rules are published by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC).

The two main categories of Incoterms® 2010 are based on modes of transport. These are used in contracts and help in defining clearly the responsibilities of sellers and buyers.

Group 1. The following terms apply to any mode of transport:

EXW Ex Works
FCA Free Carrier
CPT Carriage Paid To
CIP Carriage and Insurance Paid To
DAT Delivered at Terminal
DAP Delivered at Place
DDP Delivered Duty Paid

Group 2. The following terms apply to sea and inland waterway transport:

FAS Free Alongside Ship
FOB Free on Board
CFR Cost and Freight
CIF Cost, Insurance, and Freight

You can learn more about Incoterms® here

Freight forwarder: Freight forwarders can handle your export or import shipments. Their services include consolidating shipments, arranging transportation, coordinating the movement of cargo to the port of embarkation and preparing documents and clearing goods.
You can find a list of freight forwarders at http://www.ciffa.com/membership/member-directory/

Custom broker: Custom brokers can get goods cleared for importers and exporters at a commercial port. Their services include liaison with the CBSA, help with tariff classification, advice on import regulations and release of imported goods.
You can find a list of customs brokers at Canadian Society of Customs Brokers or at CBSA

I’ll explain some more trade terms in the 2nd part of this blog. If you have any questions about how we can help you with exporting and/or importing, send us an email or call us at 1.800.643.7014 ext. 112.

Sandra Light

Sandra Light, BA is Business Advisor - Trade Specialist at our Kelowna office. With a BA in international trade, Sandra has 20 years of experience as a trade expert working in multiple countries, and speaks French and Spanish. Over the past ten years, Sandra has advised and assisted almost one thousand entrepreneurs to grow their business through international trade. Sandra provides hands-on assistance to both importers and exporters, from helping with sales and marketing strategies to the hands-on topics of customs declarations, other government regulations and how to deal with HS codes, incoterms, logistics, means of payment, taxation and tariff treatments, and registration numbers. Sandra also loves delivering interactive and informative workshops and presentations on import

See all posts by Sandra

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