A clearing and forwarding agent is like customs brokers or customs house agents. They help in the efficient movement of goods to customers by completing several documentary and procedural formalities.
To function as a legitimate clearing agent and clear goods, most countries require a clearing license issued by the relevant authority.
Clearing agents are usually registered with the nearby port and customs authorities, overland customs points, or any other authorities inside their location of operation.
Just as in other trades, most countries have their own set of regulatory requirements for clearing agents.
Role of Clearing and Forwarding Agent/Requirements for clearing agents
From the above records, we can see that the clearing agent has very specific obligations, which are regulated by the national government.
Handling cargo at ports and border crossings is a complex process that requires appropriate operational and organizational skills.
Apart from these skills, you need good know-how on nearby legal guidelines and customs clearance.
Personnel and equipment, forklifts, and pallet trucks need to be available at the right time.
Timely offset checking allows cleared items to be handed over to the customer’s workshop in a short amount of time.
A clearing agent may be required to provide a workforce for loading and unloading.
Appropriate working pressure that can be used by your own loader/unloader must be guaranteed at the right time for loading and unloading, as customs officers are also included as observers at some point in these sports.
All sports related to cargo handling and delivery must be monitored, paid, and notified to the recipient.
The clearing agent may also be required to provide the shipment and shipment record and written review of the shipment to the supervisor or immediately to the recipient.
An important challenge in processing is to collect the required customs documents, submit them to the government, and settle the shipment.
Depending on the form of the imported product, the clearing agent may be required to contact the supervisory authorities such as the Health Bureau and the Environmental and Contaminant Control Office. Food, alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, chemicals, etc. are examples.
Such items are usually subject to inspection by officers from these regulatory bodies before they give their approval to import them into the country.
Items that do not comply with the legal requirements of each country may require returns. The problem may be in the documentation for these items.
Certain changes may be made to the original document to allow such goods to be imported into the country.
The main advantage of clearing cargo using a dedicated clearing agent is that it is usually easy to do because you have good relationships with port authorities, customs authorities, and transportation and trade unions.
Documents Required for Clearing and forwarding of Goods
What are the documents prepared by the clearing agent for clearing and forwarding goods? Let’s look at some of the important documents being processed by the clearing agent.
Bill of entry
Bill of entry is usually created by customs facilities and presented to customs authorities before the goods arrive at the destination port.
The agent must ensure that the product description and value are correctly shown on the receipt and that the product complies with the correct HS classification (code harmonization system).
The HS classification system is an internationally recognized system for product classification and coding. The charge calculation is based on the HS code.
Bill of lading
The signed bill of lading is issued by the shipping company as proof that the cargo has been received from the sender on board.
Also, you usually transfer ownership of the cargo to the consignee. This includes the names and addresses of the shipper, consignee, and notifier (if applicable).
The clearing agent must ensure that other documents for clearing the cargo are attached to the consignment.
Another document that must be presented by the clearing agent for the clearing of goods is a commercial invoice.
Commercial invoices are issued by the seller and must be enclosed with the goods.
This includes the seller’s and buyer’s full names and addresses. Includes details of the items to be shipped, the quantity of each item to be shipped, the cost of each, and the total amount paid by the customer.
At first glance, the packing list looks a lot like a commercial invoice. But the similarity ends there.
The heading says, “Packing List” and contains the full details of the product. Most importantly, the serial number, unit description, packs and packages, individual and overall dimensions of each pack (if applicable), the weight of each unit, and the total weight and HS code.
The packing list provides a complete overview of the contents, packing, and weight of the cargo.
All parties involved in the transportation and handling of cargo, including carriers, carriers, cargo handling locations, ports and customs authorities, customers, etc., require a packing list.
From loading and unloading to unloading, shipping, and stacking in the recipient’s storage room, it helps to handle the goods properly.
Certificate of Origin
A certificate of origin is usually issued by the Chamber of Commerce (CoC) of the country of origin of the product.
Indicates the country in which the product or goods are manufactured or manufactured.
In some countries, certain other government agencies also issue this certificate to exporters.
Import License of the consignee
An Import license of the consignee is given to the consignee by the relevant government agency to import the specified goods into the country.
This license must be submitted by the customs broker along with other documents prior to customs clearance.
Goods are insured against unexpected disasters and accidents that may occur during the transportation of the cargo.
An insurance certificate provides information on the type of insurance and the amount of insurance.
The terms and conditions of the contract between the seller and the buyer can be CIF (Cost Insurance Freight) or CFR (Cost Freight).
In the case of CIF, the insurance is covered by the seller or the sender, but in the case of CFR, the goods are insured by the buyer or the recipient.
Letter of credit or LC
If the transaction is made through a letter of credit, the bill of lading can include the beneficiary’s name and clearing agent in the Notifying Party field.
In such cases, the clearing agent is also responsible for following up on the clearing of documents with the bank.
clearing and forwarding agent in Nigeria
King shipping trading maritime services is a licensed customs clearing agency in Nigeria.
pays attention to all details of customs clearance in both international and domestic transportation and ensures that its customs department is always informed of the latest laws and regulations.
We help you go through a seamless and effortless clearing process.
For more information on clearing and forwarding of cargo, contact +2348167069828.
to learn more about customs clearance HERE