Over the past few years, as international trade barriers are slowly narrowing down, and a new era of world trade is emerging, import and export companies have started to proliferate. The size of exports in the world grew from less than $100 million after World War II to well over $11 trillion today. Import and Export Management is big business, but it isn’t just for big businesses. Most of the participants are small and midsize businesses, making this an exciting opportunity for entrepreneurs.
Importing and exporting require much documentation (i.e., filing official forms) to satisfy the regulations of countries. The value of the documentation is that it enables trade between entities who don’t know each other. The parties are able to trust each other because the documentation provides a common framework and process to ensure that each party will do what they say in the import/export transaction.
The main parties involved in export and import transactions are the exporter, the importer, and the carrier. The exporter is the person or entity sending or transporting the goods out of the country. The importer is the person or entity buying or transporting goods from another country into the importer’s home country. The carrier is the entity handling the physical transportation of the goods. Well-known carriers across the world are United Parcel Service (UPS), FedEx, and DHL.
What it takes to manage Import & Export via Supply Chain?
The supply chain incorporates all aspects of moving material from the vendor through the manufacturing process to the final customer. The supply chain focuses on vendors, manufacturers, intermediaries, logistical services, and the customer.
From our perspective, here are the key competencies, in order from the nuts-and-bolts requirements, to more strategic considerations: