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Step 17: Export documentation

You are here:Step 17: Export documentation >Documents required to export goods from South Africa > Registering as an exporter


 

 

Registering as an exporter

 

Introduction

All exporters need to register as such with the South African Revenue Services (SARS). In fact, you will actually register as an exporter with Customs and Excise; a division of SARS. The process is really not very difficult, but SARS/Customs and Excise have unfortunately managed to complicate the process with the use of a multitude of interconnected forms that you need to complete for different requirements, combined with the use of a somewhat confusing numbering system, and a website that does not make the process any easier.

ExportHelp will try and make this process easier for you to follow. Really there are six different registration options:

  1. You want to register as a general exporter and do not plan to take advantage of any of the trade agreements that South Africa has in place.
  2. You want to register as an exporter under the AGOA (African Growth and Opportunity Act) trade agreement
  3. You want to register as an exporter of GSP (General System of Preferences) goods to the following countries; the European Community, Norway, Switzerland, Russia and Turkey
  4. You want to register as an approved exporter in terms of the TDCA (Trade, Development and Cooperation Agreement) that exists between the European Community (EC) and South Africa
  5. You want to register as an approved exporter in terms of the SACU/EFTA (South African Customs Union/European Free Trade Agreement) trade agreement
  6. You want to register as an exporter in terms of the SADC (Southern African Development Community) trade agreement

To learn more about each of these above-mentioned alternatives, click on the link in question.

 

Do it alone or get someone to help you?

The process of registering as an exporter should be a simple task, but with Customs and Excise making it so difficult, I actually recommend that you make use of a customs consultant to assist you with customs registration and other customs and tariff matters. The following are individuals who you can contact in this regard:

You may also want to try the following customs brokers

 

Exporter registration alternatives

1. General registration as an exporter

If you intend to export goods even only occasionally or once off, you will need to register as an exporter. Individuals, sole proprietors, companies, closed corporations and trusts can all register as exporters. When you register, you will be issued with a customs client number and an exporter registration number.

If you simply want to register as an exporter then you need to complete two forms. These two forms are:

  1. Form DA 185 - Application Form for Registration Licensing of Customs and Excise Clients
  2. Form DA 185.4A2 - Registration Client Type 4A2 - Exporter (this is an annexure to form DA 185 and UNLESS you plan to register for one of the trade agreements mentioned below, you can ignore Sections A, B and C of this form)

 

2. Registration as an exporter in terms of the AGOA trade agreement

If you wish to take advantage of the provisions of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) enacted by the US Government to allow more than 1800 tariff line items duty-free access into the USA from certain sub-Saharan countries including South Africa, then you will need to complete the following documents:

  • Form DA 185 - Application Form for Registration Licensing of Customs and Excise Clients
  • Form DA 185.4A2 - Registration Client Type 4A2 - Exporter (this is an annexure to form DA 185)
  • Form DA 46A1.02 - Exporter's Application for Registration for the Purposes of the AGOA (this is Section A of form DA 185.4A2 mentioned above - you need not complete Sections B & C of form DA 185.4A2)
  • Form DA 185.4A4 - Registration Client Type 4A4 - Manufacturer (this is also an annexure to form DA185, but is available as a separate document and only needs to be completed if you are a manufacturer and your products are being exported directly or indirectly to the US under the AGOA agreement)
  • Form DA 46A1.03 - Manufacturer's Application for Registration for the Purposes of the AGOA (this is Section A of form DA 185.4A4 and only needs to be completed if you are a manufacturer and plan to export to the US under the AGOA agreement)

 
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Step 17: more information

Step 17: Export documentation
      Documents involving the importer
      Documents required to export goods from South Africa
            .Letter of credit
            .Commercial invoice
            .Customs declaration form
            .Exchange control
            .Export permit
      Documents required for transportation
      Documents required for payment
      Marine Insurance

Click where you want to go

© Cornelius Bothma

More information on Step 17
Learning to export...
The export process in 21 easy steps
Step 1: Considering exporting
Step 2:Current business viability
Step 3:Export readiness
Step 4:Broad mission statement and initial budget
Step 5:Confirming management's commitment to exports
Step 6: Undertaking an initial SWOT analysis of the firm
Step 7:Selecting and researching potential countries abroad
Step 8: Preparing and implementing your export plan
Step 9: Obtaining financing for your exports
Step 10: Managing your export risk
Step 11: Promoting the firm and its products abroad
Step 12: Negotiating and quoting in exports
Step 13: Revising your export costings and price
Step 14: Obtaining the export order
Step 15: Producing the goods
Step 16: Handling the export logistics
Step 17: Export documentation
Step 18: Providing follow-up support
Step 19: Getting paid
Step 20: Reviewing and improving the export process
Step 21: Export Management
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