Starting An Import Export Business
Grow Your International Opportunity

Starting An Import Export Business with China, the most first consideration is learn how to establish initial relationship with Chinese.

Relation and connection are not
somewhere and sometimes,
but everywhere and always
- Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

Back in 1988, as an Executive Director of World Trade Centre Association in China Guangzhou, ( WTCAGZ ) I was invited to attend World Trade Centre Association General Assembly in Los Angeles. By taking the advantage of this event, I planed to bring a small business group to visit some of major WTCA cities in U.S. in order to help those companies Starting An Import Export Business.

Executive Secretary Wang Yuan Xue, a lady who was in charge of WTCA Guangzhou, had contacted WTCA New York to find out whether there was a possibility of meeting some U.S. importers while we visited there. I prepared some products which were good to promote in U.S. and mailed the brochures to WTCA New York from China ahead of time. Very soon we got the answer that WTCA New York arranged one day for us to meet with 11 importers at the World Trade Center. The Twin Tower now was gone forever as of September 11, 2001 by the terrorist. Starting An Import Export Business

It was at 76 floor in South Tower of World Trade Center.(it was collapsed in 2001) where I first met my customer, who was from Long Island New York and has handled microscopes business for years. I could never believed how he bargained with me at that short, restricted moment. We negotiated Microscope which he witting to artifact from China. It was a rattling hornlike negotiation, I meet could not clew the lessen as the toll was likewise baritone to be accepted. In addition, the commercialism constituent was not I due which staleness be L/C, a constituent we feature Letter of Credit issued by bank. Instead, he desired me to accept D/P payment method. There was a bounteous notch between two, if he united to modify the commercialism term, be like I would attain that deal. There was no closing at that time, so we modify the study card, and we both united to conceive most it. Not long after I backward to China, my customer wrote me a honor that he changed his mind and united to issue an L/C exclusive for the prototypical shipment. From this response I knew he was eager to make deal that not only for this one contract, he needed to test my company and the merchandise as well, and eager to put his foot print to China for future's long term marketing. In exchange, I responded him almost right away as I was also, wanted to get an opportunity for a future business run, even the deal won't be profitable. I signed the contract, and he opened the L/C according with the Sales Confirmation. We shipped the goods accordance with the L/C, and our company received the first payment from this buyer very smoothly. Starting An Import Export Business

That's how I got started in import export business with this customer. After a short period of signing the contract, Chinese currency had been changed from 5.6 RMB Chinese Yuan per U.S.dollar to 6.8 RMB Yuan per U.S. dollar, which means we gained a little for exporting microscopes. And again after a certain time, I didn't remember what exactly the year was that Chinese yuan droped again from 6.8 to 7.5 per U.S.dollar and then 8.3 per dollar and was hooked with the later one for years. Our microscopes business was making a nice profits because of Chinese Yuan devaluation.(it has been rased from 8.3 Chinese yuan per U.S. Dollar to 7.993 from late 2005 until now) And this product kept steady for over 15 years until my former company had been capital reorganized in 2005.

                          Tips On Starting An Import Export Business

  • For most Chinese suppliers, the payment term is a major concern to be considered instead of price, specially negotiating with a new importer or buyer on their first contract. I think this is reasonable fair to both side.
  • It will be easier to conclude a contract by using L/C payment term instead of D/P payment when Starting An Import Export Business with China, especially negotiating with your new exports or sellers. You may change the terms at a certain period later when your both side mutually feel need it and understand each other so well.
  • Do not concern yourself whether or not you appear polite or are sensitive to the foreign culture. Americans are generally considered the most polite and generous of visitors in foreign countries. Do not ask for references of other US customers of this supplier, they will likely not be helpful. (according to John Wiley Spiers's book How Small Business Trades Worldwide). If you are interested in Starting An Import Export Business, this book is really a "must-read" one.
  • Do not expect your first contract be profitable. You plan to deal with a foreigner, a Chinese partner, facing a new but very different culture.Starting An Import Export Business

So don't expect you win all the things. You will pay your time at learning curve, and pay for lessons, mistakes when Starting An Import Export Business. NO PAIN NO GAIN! But you might gain your connection, your relationship, even more, your long term marketing - that's a big win! Don’t forget this is your Foot Print in China, a 1.3 billion population country. We call it as “Testing Order” - quality of the goods testing, fulfillment testing, marketing testing, loyalty testing, ... and whatever it would be. By doing this, you already opened the door in China, you already got chance to go further. You already made your initial relationship with China on Starting An Import Export Business.

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