Dont's of Exporting part 1

                                                            Dont's of Exporting  part 1
by Margaret M. Gatti, Esquire
(Article appeared in the 1996 Official Export Guide)
(Article was revised in Octomber 1999 and in May 2002) ( Apdated April 2007)
All Rights Reserved

I've seen many articles that deal with what you should do in exporting ( ''the do's in Exporting''), but I can't recall seeing any articles that deal with what you shouldn't do in exporting ( ''the dont's in Exporting.'')  I don't want to seem like a glass is half empty person, but as an international business attorney whose practice is limited to international business transactions, I get  many new clients because they've  committed a ''don't'' in Exporting and because they need an attorney to help them sort through the effects of the ''don't'' they've committed.

In sorting through the effects of the ''don'ts''  that come to my attention, I often think how much time, trouble and expense could have been saved, had the exporter done a little quality control in advance and avoided committing the ''don't'' altogether.

The purpose of this articles is to tell you you can quality control your export operations by reviewing some of the ''don'ts'' I have seen U.S. exporters commit.

Don't #1

Don't assume that the U.S. Export Controls relevant to your product at one point in time will remain relevant forever. U.S. Export Controls, which take the form of export prohibitions and various export restrictions or license requirements, result from presidential and/or Congressional action triggered by concerns over national security, foreign policy and short supply.

Consequently, as Presidential and / or Congressional concerns over these matters shift, export controls are likely to be subjected to change. Violations of U.S. Export Control Laws have many serious repercussions, ranging from product seizure and denial of export privileges through monetary fines to imprisonment.

Don't #2

Don't forget that you as a U.S. exporter are responsible for maintaining full compliance with all U.S. export control laws that are relevant to your products at the time of your export. Such responsibility makes you liable for the export control violations that you commit while engaging in an export transaction and for the export control violations that your agents ( such as freight forwarders)commit while carrying out export operations on your behalf.

Furthermore, such responsibility will additionally make you responsible for the export control violations that your customers commit in relation to the use of your products for prohibited purposes and in relation to the illegal transshipment or illegal re-export of your products in those instances when you have prior awareness of your customers intentions in these regards. 

Thus, if a U.S. export prohibition or a U.S. export license requirements applies to your products, you are responsible for: (a) maintaining full compliance with such prohibition or restriction in the course of conducting your own export operations ;  (b) making your agents aware of such prohibition or requirement and insuring that your agents observe such prohibition or requirement in their conduct of export operations on your behalf; and (c) determining your customers intentions vis-a-vis using, transshipping or re-exporting your products while informing your customers of the export compliance obligations that apply to your products.

Don't #3

Don't neglect to investigate whether the foreign market into which you are exporting your product has  any import Controls related to the sale of your product. Import Controls breakdown into import prohibitions, import restrictions (i.e.,quotas), and import licensing requirements. 

They may be based on country of origin, product types, or product characteristics, such as products produced by convicts and counterfeit products. Imported products, which contravene an importing country's import controls, are generally refused entry at the importing country's border.

Don't #4

Don't assume that you can sell your products into foreign markets without making any alterations to your products. Many foreign markets attempt to discourage imports by subjecting imported products to various ''special requirements.'' These ''special requirements'' are generally called non-tariff barriers and typically fall into the following categories:

Product specifications, product testing requirements, or product certification requirements; labeling requirements; Packaging requirements; or Documentary requirements.

Imported products which do not comply with an importing country's ''special requirements''  may be refused entry into the importing country, seized at the border, assessed a monetary penalty, or subjected to a program of forced compliance.

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