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How to ship goods from China

As a buyer or a small business owner, you have decided to do business with China and import your specialised products back to South Africa, but how do you ensure the shipping process runs effortlessly? We have some tips as to how you can get your products from China to South Africa timeously and in a cost-effective manner.


Step 1: Acquire a quote from your shipping agent

Before you even conduct business with your Chinese supplier/manufacturer, ensure that you acquire a quote or at least 3, before agreeing to import the products. As shipping prices may fluctuate, rather secure the cost and account for it in a budget prior to agreeing to purchase products from China.


Step 2: Confirm the quote

Once you have found a reliable shipping company who can import your products at the right prices, sign the deal. This helps you fix your costs beforehand, as the price won’t change when you do decide to ship the products and have finalised the details and contract with your supplier.


Step 3: Packing and Shipping – What you need

Once the Chinese supplier and has packed your products, account for at least 2 to 3 days for the products to be packed in the container and on the ship. You can account for delays as shipment is weather dependent. Your shipping agent will help you with all the details but you can get ready for delivery by acquiring all the documentation you will need in order to collect your products when they arrive in South Africa.


Step 4: Administration and documentation

While your products are sailing across the high seas, make sure to have the following documentation to your South African shipping agent at least 7 days before your products land in the country:

  1. Original Shipping Bill

  2. Commercial Invoice

  3. Packing List

  4. Packing Declaration

The supplier will release the original shipping bill once the payment is made.


Step 5: Clearing customs

Your shipping agent will assist you with the import duties and customs tax when your shipment arrives in the country. It is your duty to ensure that all invoices are paid immediately so as to avoid delay receiving the goods and paying additional taxes.

Category : Business Tips