90% of world trade is carried by the international shipping industry through a sophisticated marine and air supply chain. The car you’re driving, and the phone you’re using, are made of raw materials mined in one country, turned into components in another, assembled in another and finally are sent to us as consumer goods in Australia. The global supply chain that makes this happen is complex and vast with many moving parts. In Australia alone, the Transport and Logistics Industry is valued at almost $100 billion. Importing and exporting goods as an individual or business usually requires a freight forwarder. Three of the most common questions we get asked are ‘What is freight forwarding?’, ‘What does freight forwarder mean?’ and ‘What does a freight forwarder do?’ Freight forwarding is a supply chain process and is the most widely used method of international and domestic transport for the carriage of goods and cargo for both business and personal use. Freight forwarders Brisbane wide such as ICL International act as an intermediary for your business to ensure your cargo reaches its destination undamaged and on-time.
- Does your business have a need for specialised freight services to get your products where they need to be on-time and in perfect condition? Are you looking for knowledgeable and efficient customs advisory services to navigate the changing international customs and quarantine landscape? Want to learn more about ‘What does a freight forwarder do’ and how a freight forwarder can help your business?
What is Freight Forwarding?
Freight forwarding is the most hassle-free way to import and export goods. It is a logistics process that contains several stages that start with the transfer of goods from your business or ‘source’ and end with the goods being transported to their final destination. Prior to freight forwarding companies, shipping goods for sale across the world was a time-consuming and complicated process for many businesses. As a business, you had to individually liaise with the different shipping lines and government departments necessary in order to get your products to the destination. Once at the destination, this whole process would start again in order for import clearance. With language barriers and complicated trade tariffs worldwide, shipping without a freight forwarder often proved to be overly complex for businesses wanting to import and export their products. So, what do freight forwarders do exactly?
What do Freight Forwarders Do?
Freight forwarders provide a range of services tailored to the logistics process and aim to make these processes as stress-free as possible for clients. Freight forwarders have the knowledge and expertise in the logistics industry to get your products safely to their destination on-time and will also act as your intermediary with a range of transportation and shipping services that are needed to import and export cargo both domestic and internationally.
Some key freight forwarding services that a freight forwarder can offer your business are:
- Ground transportation of cargo and goods using a network of rail and trucking services.
- Warehousing and storage needs.
- Packing solutions that are compliant with relevant international shipping standards.
- Inventory management solutions.
- International and domestic insurance solutions in the event of accidental damage.
- Shipping documentation including Bills of Lading (BOL), commercial invoices, certificates of origin, inspection certificates, export licenses, and packing lists for both commercial and domestic shipments.
- Tariff and International Trade Agreement consultancy services.
- Air and sea freight forwarding solutions including negotiating with shipping lines for the best pricing.
- Customs clearance and customs advisory services.
What is Customs Clearance?
Understanding customs clearance is a crucial part of answering the question ‘What is freight forwarding?’. One of the key components of shipping goods internationally is complying with both domestic and destination customs and quarantine regulations that control the imports and exports of goods into and out of a country. Customs clearance is the process of applying for import and in some cases export approval of goods and cargo through a government’s regulatory body and ensuring necessary taxes and tariffs are paid. A customs clearance broker can advise and act on your behalf to advise and clear your cargo in a timely manner and also works to ensure your business can import and export products in the most cost-effective way possible.
Customs and tariffs compliance to import and export goods internationally is a complicated process with procedures and tariffs varying from country to country. Engaging specialist customs advisory services is the best way to ensure your business can clear your cargo on time without reducing the chance of incurring any financial penalty. Want to know more about ‘What is Customs Clearance?’ visit our customs and forwarding services page for more information. ICL International has been servicing our Brisbane and Gold Coast based clients for nearly two decades and knows what it takes to safely navigate and transport your business’ precious cargo on a global scale.