Export formalities

An exporter, who has sent goods outside the country, has an obligation to satisfy the Reserve Bank of India that he has received payment from his overseas buyer. The government does not allow any exporter to export for any other consideration. The exchange control regulations require all the exporters to:

Make a declaration on the prescribed form to the Collector of customs that foreign exchange, representing the full export value of the goods, has been or will be disposed of in manner and within the period specified by the RBI;

Negotiate all shipping documents, including those relating to sales on consignment basis through authorized dealers; and

Receive payment by an approved method;

Exporters are required to realize the foreign exchange proceeds of export within the specified period. If the exporter has any genuine difficulty in obtaining he must seek the permission of the Reserve Bank for the extension of the time limit. It is up to the exporter to prove that the delay, if any, has not been caused because of his fault or negligence.

Exchange control regulations require an exporter to fill certain specific forms and submit them to the Customs authorities. The information sought in these includes the full value of the products that are exported and such other particulars as the names of importers and their bankers, deduction, deductions by way of commission, etc,


The goods that are exported may be subject to certain maritime perils. The risks of such perils may be covered under marine insurance. Who should bear the cost of the insurance depends on the terms of the sale. For instance, under the CIF term, insurance is the responsibility of the exporter.

Marine Insurance in India is undertaken by the four subsidiaries of the General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC): The National Insurance Company; New India Insurance Company; Oriental Insurance Company and United India Insurance Company. Now even a few private insurance companies are also authorized for Marine Insurance.

The Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) covers certain export risks, which are not covered by the general insurers.

Shipping the Goods:

Goods may be exported to foreign markets by sea, air, post, land and river.

Shipping by Sea:

To obtain the permission of the port authorities for the movement of goods into the port, it is necessary to present the cart ticket to the gate warden/inspector/keeper at the port gate.

Sometimes the vessels accept export cargo at the jetty and sometimes they load it in midstream. When the vessels are in midstream, the cargo has to be taken by boats for purposes of loading. In such cases, the exporter has direct touch with the ship without having to going through the port Commissioner’s formalities. When the goods are loaded in the shed vessel, they have to be sent to the Port commission’s jetty from there loaded and taken care of by the staff of the Port commissioner.

Several charges have to be paid to the Port Commissioner before the goods are sent to the shed. These charges vary from port to port and are known as the Port Commissioner’s charges If the goods are sent for over side loading (mid stream) only the river dues surcharge, ad valorem or fixed toll and rent have to be paid. The exporter will, of course, have to pay for the boat charges, which will depend on the quantity of cargo and the rate of charge fixed between him and the boatman.

The exporter/forwarding agent should necessarily obtain the permission of the Preventive Officer of the Customs Department, who supervises the loading of the cargo on board the vessel. This permission, called the let ship is given as an endorsement on the duplicate copy of the shipping bill. The shipping company loads the cargo only after receipt of the shipping bill with the let ship order.

After the cargo is loaded, the master of the vessel issues the mate receipt which contains information about the name of the vessel; berth; date of shipment; description of packages; marks and number ; condition of the cargo at the time of its receipt on board the vessel.

  • Bhaskaran Nair

    Add   procedure for obtaining duplicate shipment documents(E.P colt, Exchange control copy of Shipping Bills)   from customs.