View Full Version : shipping and payment

29-04-2004, 11:05 AM
Hello, i have recently established a contact with a supplier from china (footwear) and have spent the past few weeks looking for the best company who offer the best prices. Now, most of my responses have been that the company only deal in large wholesale orders. However i did find a company where I was able to order a small quantity just to sample the quality and other details. Now, all the comapnies I have contacted (about 15-20) all operate under the same policy, they wish to recieve payment before the product is shipped.

I have recieved an invoice and have asked for company details and registration details so i feel a little more sercue about sending money across the world. I have all this and yet I feel a little bit concerned that the company is under no obligation to send me my order.

They wish to recieve money via western union. I have agreed to pay the sum onf $180 before the end of this week. Please can you get in contact with me asap to offer any advice or suggestions that may make this trade more safe and give me some kind of piece of mind.
Also if you could let me know if this is the standard way of doing business with companies from china?

I am only starting in an attempt to open a business so going through a bank account at the moment is not possible.

Please also let me know if there are any customs charges that may accour once the order reaches the UK.

Many thanks and i look forward to your reply.

Marko Kasic


04-05-2004, 11:02 AM

I'd recommend either speaking to someone at the UK Trade and Investment office:


or contacting your local Business Link and arranging a meeting with an adviser:



05-05-2004, 12:21 PM
Dear Marko,

My own research of doing business with companies in HK/China has shown that they normally require part payment to be made at the time the goods are ordered, with the remaining amount being paid prior to shipment. Goods are usually quoted in US Dollars, and the goods are normally made F.O.B. (Free on Board), this means that they are delivered to port, but you must make the arrangements for shipping etc.

Prior payment does raise a number of issues such as the delivery of goods, and the quality of goods received. Just as you are concerned about not receiving the goods, the supplier may be concerned about non-payment; it works both ways and you should try and have a balanced approach.

Find out as much as you can about the supplier, and ask them if they have any other customers in the UK whose details can be passed on to you for verification and reference. Why not suggest making part payment in the first instance, with the remainder being made on the receipt of goods.

There are a number of organisations who may be able to give you further information and support when doing business with companies in HK/China, namely:

China-Britain Business Council http://www.cbbc.org

Hong Kong Trade Development Council http://www.tdctrade.com

Foreign & Commonwealth Office http://www.fco.gov.uk to locate the details of British Consulates in China.

With regard to customs charges, there are import tariffs on certain goods from particular countries and you will need to contact HM Customs & Excise http://www.hmce.gov.uk for further information. Don't forget to ask them whether any tariffs apply to imported goods that are used as samples, and are not for resale.

Hope this helps.


LiveWIRE mentor