First Steps in Exporting

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1 First Steps in Exporting Maggie Weaver Canada-Ontario Export Forum $ Step 1: Export readiness diagnostics $ Step 2: Guides to exporting $ Step 3: Preliminary market research $ Step 4: Export plan $ Step 5: Practical issues $ Step 6: Your key supporters Step 1: Export Readiness Diagnostics Export Diagnostic TradeStart.ca. Select a market type (fast, slow or IFI) and/or a country, then answer about 100 questions on your firm, your service, export objectives, management support, market entry strategies, export motivation, your industry, promotional approach, and relevant experience. Feedback is given on a section when all the questions have been answered. Export Readiness Diagnostic (services) UNCTAD International Trade Center. Software that assists service export firms in assessing their readiness to export (intended for firms in developing countries). Download a zipped copy or use online. Evaluate Your Export Readiness Albro Export & Marketing Inc, Montreal. Choose the option For companies wanting to market to USA. Also helpful information about manufacturers agents. Export Quiz: Are You Ready? Page 4-5 of Step By Step Guide to Exporting (see below) Step 2: Guides to Exporting Getting Ready to Export Guide (under Resources General Information) Ministry of Economic Development & Trade (MEDT). Particularly Part 1: Planning your export strategy (48 pages, PDF). Part 2: Export resources is now out-of-date, but the Appendix at the end includes sample documents. Available as a single PDF, as a printed document, and as a CD- ROM. (Note a new edition is due shortly.) A Step-by-Step Guide to Exporting FAITC. This guide is a good read, includes a chapter on E-business for exporters. (60 pages PDF) 1

2 Canadian Exporting for Dummies Export Development Canada (EDC) Order at Exporting for Small Business in Canada RBCRoyal Bank. Tips on how to get started; Online exporting; Ready? Set? Export!; Dollars and sense of exporting; Are you export-able?; Export financing & assistance directory; Exporting strategy workbook. Exporting to the United States FAITC. Includes legal issues, basics of export financing, immigration & business travel, labeling & marking, packaging, US border security, and dealing with US Customs. (67 pages PDF) Guide to Online Export Resources MEDT, Jan Guide to sources, especially those relating to exporting to US. Available as a CD-ROM. (Note: new edition under development.) Regional Markets of the United States Exporting to India Exporting to China (registration required) Export Development Canada. Canada Brazil Trade Portal Brazil Canada Chamber of Commerce. Web directory of good sites for trade and investment between Brazil and Canada. Step 3: Preliminary market research Key Export Markets by Country (under Thinking About Exporting) MEDT. For each Ontario s most important target countries, lists suggested market opportunities, as well as useful links. Market Reports & Resources (Registration required.) Cdn Trade Commissioner Service, FAITC. Market reports compiled by Trade Commissioners at Canadian consulates and embassies abroad. Under Doing Business Abroad, click on Market Reports for information about specific markets, eg The Spanish Automotive Industry, and additional information on business conditions, eg Import regulations Madrid. Canada s International Market Access Report (CIMAR) (under Doing Business Abroad, click on Related Resources) FAITC. The CIMAR Executive Summary (PDF) outlines foreign market access issues by region and country. The CIMAR Trade & Investment Barriers Database is searchable by keyword, sector, product code and market, and provides information on foreign trade & investment barriers. Market Information [food & beverage sector] 2

3 Agri-Food Trade Service. Customize the page so that you receive updates as new market reports are published. An Exporter s Guide to Canada s Agri-Food Sector (registration required) Export Development Canada. For seafood, special crops (pulses, mustard seed, etc) and beef and pork sectors, discusses challenges and major market opportunities. Canadian Tourism Commission Research & statistics annual statistics, arrivals & departures, trends, etc. Stat-USA Reports (under Trade, click on International Market Research Reports) US Dept Commerce. Reports include Industry Sector Analysis ISA reports similar to InfoExport reports but usually for narrower sectors; International Market Insight IMI reports brief reports on specific issues such as new legislation; entries from CIA World Factbook; and Country Commercial Guides. Additional reports available at (under NTDB, for a fee). NB No reports for USA. Country Commercial Guides (under Trade, click on International Market Research Reports) US Commercial Service. Sections include Leading Sectors for U.S. Exports and Investments and Trade Regulations, Customs and Standards. Written by the staff of U.S. Embassies, no Guide for USA. Tariff Download Facility World Trade Organisation. Comprehensive database of WTO members customs tariffs and, where available, imports. The data are the general non-preferential rates (officially known as mostfavoured nation or MFN rates) and are both the rates actually charged (or applied ) and countries committed maximum rates. They are disaggregated to the standard six-digit HS codes. Data can be downloaded in Excel, XML or CSV formats. Step 4: Export Plan The Elements of Your Export Plan Page 12 of the Step By Step Guide Devising an Export Plan Business Development Bank of Canada. International Marketing Plan Workbook Small Business Administration 43pp PDF, from Breaking Into the Trade Game: A Small Business Guide to Exporting, 4th edn Sample export plans: $ West Pacific Marketing (service) 3

4 $ Silvera & Sons (food product) $ Gruzen Watch (manufactured product) $ D.A.P. Exports (manufactured products) $ Visigoth Imports Inc (export import brokerage) $ FAS Online (food product) Export planning template (click on Downloads) $ Tiny Tim s Ginseng Company (agricultural product) $ YouCan Adventures (tourism) $ The Import Export Coach (wood & building products) US$20 $ The Import Export Coach (giftware) US$20 (Other business plans involving international markets may be found at ) Step 5: Practical issues Importer/Exporter Account Number Canada Border Services Agency. Form RC1 if you are starting a new business, or Form RC1C if you already have a business number (for this form, type RC1C into the search box). Exporting Goods Regulations & Contacts Covers export regulations for live animals, cultural products, customs regulations, export controls, firearms, food, hazardous waste, labeling, meat & poultry, narcotics, nuclear material, plants and wildlife. (For customs regulations of the target country, World Customs Organization links to National Customs websites worldwide at Exporters Forms and Publications Canada Border Services Agency. A convenient first stop for identifying the right forms. In particular: Exporting Goods from Canada: A Handy Customs Guide for Exporters (RC4116) (28 pages PDF, also available in print) Step 6: Your key supporters Canada-Ontario Export Forum One of the 10 regional trade networks, coordinating to provide programs and services to exporters and potential exporters in Ontario. Maggie Weaver, Secretariat. 4

5 The Exporter Continuum A framework for identifying the right government agency to support the exporter. For each stage of export-readiness (potential, preparing and experienced), describes the types of support services available. For example, the COEF Passport identifies COEF member agencies under the headings General information, Skills development, Export counselling, Market entry support, Export financing, and In-market assistance. In-person sources of assistance: MEDT, International Trade Branch Staff Directory (under About Us) MEDT. Individual staff members are responsible for particular regions, and for the US also for important industry sectors. Canadian Trade Commissioner Service Toronto FAITC. Individual staff members responsible for particular industry sectors. Small Business Centres (under Business) COBSC, MEDT and FedNor are all members of COEF. These agencies, directly and through partners, provide in-person export support at local small business resource centres, such as the Mississauga Business Enterprise Centre and Orillia Area CFDC Telephone help from CanadaBusiness.ca Skills development: New Exporters to Border States (NEBS) (under Preparing to Export, click on New Exporters ) MEDT, International Trade Branch. A practical, hands-on introduction to the basics of exporting to the United States. For companies with little or no experience in exporting, the program is operated by International Trade Branch in co-operation with the Canadian Consulates in Buffalo and Detroit. This is offered as both a field trip to Buffalo or Detroit, and virtually as a teleconference The Calendar of Events gives the upcoming schedule for NEBS, seminars, in-bound missions and important tradeshows (click on Trade Events, on the website main page). PROFIT Food Export seminar (click on Food, then on Marketing, Trade, Export) Ont. Min Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs. A similar program to NEBS, offered to food companies. Once or twice a year contact for upcoming dates. FITT, Forum for International Trade Training Offers formal training programs, including full certificate programs and online training: FITTskills offered through colleges such as Confederation College, as well as via the Internet. Take just the ones that interest you, such as International Marketing, or all of them to become a Certified International Trade Professional (CITP). 5

6 More advanced export programs: All the COEF partners offer export counselling simply call the phone number provided in the COEF Passport, and explain your business sector and target market. Partner agencies often have staff specializing in particular industries or sectors, and in particular target market regions. Some examples of specific programs & services offered are: Virtual Trade Commissioner (right hand frame) FAITC. Registered businesses receive customized trade leads etc. from trade commissioners abroad. Finding Customers, Finding Cash (registration required) EDC. A guide to federal government services for exporters, with emphasis on financing: market development support, financing contracts and foreign investments, foreign buyer financing, guarantees and bonding. Export Market Access Ontario Chamber of Commerce. Assists SMEs to access or expand in foreign markets that are beyond the U.S. Eligibility: 5+ employees and annual sales of $500,000+. Grants to cover up to 50% of eligible costs incurred to develop export sales. Eligible activities include market research, marketing tools, direct contacts and foreign bidding projects. Market Xpansion Loan Business Development Bank of Canada. Market Xpansion Loan TM is to finance expenses related to market expansion. This loan, which can be up to $50,000, can be amortized over a period of up to six years, and no principal payments are required in the first 12 months. The loan can be repaid in 10 semi-annual instalments; all or part of the loan can be paid off at any time without penalty. Southern Ontario Development Program Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario. Program to promote economic development, diversification and innovation. Established SMEs are eligible, and the priority area Innovation and Commercialization includes support SMEs at developing or implementing export strategies for international markets, such as marketing plans and market testing, hiring of foreign market representatives, and participation in trade missions. Summary: $ Step 1: Export readiness diagnostic $ Step 2: Key web sources $ Step 3: Preliminary market research $ Step 4: Export plan $ Step 5: Practical issues now try the Diagnostic again! $ Step 6: Your key supporters 6

7 More information: Halton Region Small Business Centre: or Or Canada-Ontario Export Forum iecanada.com 7

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