What to expect from your customs broker?

What to expect from your customs broker?
02 Mar, 2022

It is imperative to understand who a customs broker is in order to know what to expect from this party. Customs clearance is an integral part of the whole supply chain. A customs broker is licensed by the Customs Department to act as an agent for any import or export transactions with customs. It is expected from the customs broker to act as an extended arm of customs imparting knowledge of proper & complete information to importers or exporters with all regulations of customs & other Government bodies. Within the international supply chain, this party is responsible for carrying out customs clearance work. On the other hand, it also acts as a representative of the importer/exporter and deals with the customs authority.

Given the fact that your cargo would essentially have to pass through the customs clearance process, you would expect your customs broker to be thoroughly experienced and well-versed with the process. Hence, in order to successfully complete a freight forwarding process, it is indispensable to choose a reliable customs broker. 

Whether you are a trader or an individual importing or exporting goods, even the slightest delay in your shipment can cause huge harm to you. Here is exactly where the expertise of a good customs broker comes into play. It helps you to avoid shipment latency and clears the cargo that you want to have shipped from all airports/seaports and officials. 

Below are some attributes that you might expect while choosing your customs broker:

  • Your customs clearance agent should have a proper license – The customs clearance agent you hire needs to have a valid operating license that is approved by the respective operating ports customs head office. This is the foremost document that you could expect to be with your broker in order to have a seamless freight forwarding process.
  • Should be well trained – Customs clearance requires trained professionals. The broker should possess all the necessary knowledge and skills to perform their duties and avoid any unnecessary complications. 
  • Should be well versed with the recent changes in customs, foreign trade & related policies - Being abreast of all the trade-related information and mandates is a must for a trust-worthy customs broker. As freight forwarding and shipping policies could be really complicated for laymen to understand, it’s essential for your customs broker to keep tabs on the changes in policies and keep you informed accordingly.
  • Should have necessary knowledge of your industry – Irrespective of what industry you belong to, your broker should have the necessary knowledge of the industry in order to provide you with professional advice on your shipments. A knowledgeable broker would be well-informed about the type of goods you are having forwarded and hence would be able to render the essential responsibilities associated with the shipments. 
  • Should be able to handle any organizational challenge – Another most significant attribute possessed by a reliable customs broker is organizational skills. As their job involves handling each and every piece of shipping documentation, it is mandatory for them to tackle the process in an efficient and organized manner. If anything goes wrong during the clearance process, you, as a client, would be the one to pay the ultimate price.

Thus, hiring a responsible, experienced, and reliable customs broker comes with its own benefits and the slightest mistake in choosing the right entity could jeopardize the entire process of your shipment. Now since you know what to expect from your customs broker, you certainly won’t end up making the wrong choice! If you are looking for a customs broker in Mumbai, we are here to assist you. 

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