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New To International Trading?

There is a lot to do to start trading. Here are a few points for you to consider.

If you don't know already, you will need to know the following:


  1. What are you going to import or export? Some items have restrictions placed upon them that can slow, or prohibit their movement cross-border. These restrictions can be imposed by Government imposed health, quarantine, quota or licensing requirements.

  2. Who are you going to buy/sell to? Quite often, a supplier/purchaser may have previous experience with dealing with Australian importers or exporters and this can assist you with finalising the transaction.

  3. How are you going to pay for the goods purchased? If you are an intending importer, this is an important question. Overseas suppliers often demand payment in, for example, US Dollars. Knowing where to buy currency at the best rate is important - and it isn't necesarily your bank.

  4. The cororilly of the the above is, if you are an intending exporter, how are you going to be paid? And in what currency?

  5. The next issue is how are you going to get your goods here, or export them there? Having a good freight forwarder is an essential aspect of cross-border trading. A good forwarder will ease a lot of the pain and allow you to get on with what you do best - trade in your goods.

  6. A good freight forwarder will also be able to assist you with your Government importation formalities, such as with the Australian Border Force (ABF) and the Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources entries. They will also undertake your registration with ABF - a legal requirement to be able to move goods into or out of Australia.

  7. Are the goods insured? Many contracts require the goods to be insured and, if you are an importer, you really do need to have the goods insured. But with whom? There are a number of trading terms (in trading, these are usually called Incoterms published by the International Chamber of Commerce) and they are very important in determining where risk passes from seller to buyer.

  8. Next, are you registered for Australian GST? Many first time traders forget this important element. You will be charged GST at the time of importation and, unless your company is registered, you won't be able to claim your input tax credit. GST is calculated on the sum of the customs value (not necesarily what you paid for the goods) plus, customs duty (if any) plus overseas freight and insurance to get the goods to destination. In Australia, the import GST rate is 10%.

  9. The goods you are importing may also be subject to customs duty and other imposed charges. It is important to be fully acquainted with these duties, taxes and charges before you import the goods. If you are an exporter, it may be good customer relations to ask whether your overseas purchaser is acquainted with these charges in his/her country.

  10. Lastly, getting your goods from the wharf or airport to your premises, and especially if you are located in a regional area, takes planning and organising.


Whether you are intending to start importing or exporting, let Trade Consultants assist you to get started. Please click on the link below so that we can discuss your specific issues.

Australian Customs and International Trade Advice for Importers and Exporters


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