for International Trade Professionals
  Wednesday May 12, 2010         Issue 238         Volume 10 Number 10 Read previous issues online
This Newsletter is sponsored by Commercial News USA 

For 9 years this newsletter has been bringing you descriptions of useful websites for international trade.

We are now expanding our activities and from now on will offer not only useful websites, but also 3 new services:
Useful service providers to help you sort out your overseas operations, taken from, our new, soon-to-be-released "Knowledge Resource" and database of qualified service providers for international trade.
Jobs from FITA’s Career Headquarters
• Events offered by our partner the U.S. Commercial Service and other related agencies.

This week in Really Useful Sites you will:
• Explore the United Kingdom market
• Learn about customs classifications
• Find international trade data at the World Trade Organization's Time Series on International Trade
• Identify important Free Trade Agreements
• Attend seminars and events in celebration of World Trade Week
• Advertise your U.S. export products in Commercial News USA

Click here to read this issue on our website.

Also in this issue:
Featured service providers this week:
1. Energy & Enviro Finland
2. ISSA Egypt Group
3. Kekepana International Services, USA

If you are a service provider:

Join and be featured as an expert
Use ID and KEY: FITA / 1234
Featured job this week:
Senior Manager, Import/Export Specialist

If you are an employer:

Post Your Job Openings
Upcoming U.S. Commercial Service Events & Webinars:

3 events for Going Global

World Trade Week

May 2010, New York City, Los Angeles, Miami and Western Michigan



Our Featured Country

Although operating in English can be an advantage for developing business with the UK, access to the market can be difficult because the market is quite saturated. The UK is one of the most mature economies in Europe, very integrated into the global market. The country is in the top 3 of the main importers and exporters of commercial services in the world and in the top 10 of the largest exporters and importers of merchandise. And around 50% of this trade is done within the European Union. Nevertheless the U.S. is an important trade partner there are still opportunities.

The U.K. is the sixth largest economy in the world and represents a market of more than 61 million. One option to enter the market is to concentrate on retail trade. British consumers are sensitive to advertising and can be easily convinced by a good communication strategies. After-sales service is important, as consumers can often complain and defend their rights. They also have a well-established “buy now, pay later” culture and rely on consumer debt. To learn about the retailing in the UK visit The Retail Bulletin.

The UK is also known as the easiest place to set up and run a business in Europe, because of the least number of barriers to entrepreneurship and an overall tax burden well below the average for the European Union. The country is the favorite location of foreign direct investment projects in Europe. To learn about direct investment and also find out about exports from the country, take a look at the website of UK Trade and Investment Agency.

And don't forget the website of the U.S. Commercial Service in UK. The site gives extensive information about the market through news and guides. And the Commerical Service programs conferences, trade missions and training sessions. If that's not enough, you'll also find plenty of good research at the FITA UK Mini Portal, a feature of the FITA Web site. The FITA Mini Portal has an overview of the country, with facts about the language, currency, climate, etc., plus more specific information about the economy, markets, taxes, labor market indicators, and tips on doing business in UK.

The UK Mini Portal is one of many research gateways at the FITA site. To find Mini Portals for other countries, just click on "Country Profiles" from within a Mini Portal, or at the FITA home page.

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The Worldwide Common Product Nomenclature

The "Harmonized System" or simply "HS" is a harmonized commodity description, a coding system developed by the World Customs Organization (WCO) as an international product nomenclature. It comprises about 5,000 commodity groups; each identified by a six digit code and it is recognized by more than 200 countries, including the US. The official website for worldwide harmonized codes is on the WCO website This means that the HS codes are the basis of all products classifications. Companies can use the HS number to estimate tariff rates when importing or exporting and complete shipping documents. However it is often important to confirm a classification number with customs authorities, freight forwarders, customs brokers and/or trade attorneys.

Each country has its own customs nomenclature, defining commodities at a more detailed level than 6-digits. That is, country-specific codes start with the international six digits and then add up to 4 four digits to define specific products. And in the US, there are slightly difference classifications systems for exports and for imports. Export codes in the US are administered by the U.S. Census Bureau and are called “Schedule B.” There is a new detailed search engine for Schedule B on the Census website. Import Harmonized Code of the US (with tariff rates) can be found on the website of the United States International Trade Commission.

The European Union has a slightly different system. The ‘Combined Nomenclature", which is the EU’s coding system for classifying products for customs and statistical purposes, can be found on the pages of the “Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, 2007." The codes used for imports (with tariff rates) can be found on the pages of the Online Customs Tariff Database (TARIC) Home Page.

Many other countries also publish their classification databaes online. Take a look at the Mercosul list and the Russian classifications.

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Special Promotions for the July 2010 Edition of Commercial News USA

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Up-To-Date and Comparable Trade Data

When going global, one always needs good and recent trade statistics. For Total Merchandise Trade and trade in services, among all trade databases available on the internet, the Time Series on international trade of the World Trade Organization is one of the most interesting. It merges the most comprehensive international resources (OECD, IMF, Word Bank), supplemented by national publications and forecasts and estimites. Data are comparable, recent and available for almost all the countries of the world.

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Simplify Your Trade Relations

When doing business abroad you want to compete on fair terms. One way to help is to do business in countries with which your own country has free trade agreements. These treaties can expand opportunities for workers and businesses and help competition in the global marketplace.

FTA partners or the United States represent more than 40% of U.S. exports. To access the detail of the agreements, visit the and browse per country in the menu on the left side of the page. For a complement of statistics, reports and information on pending free trade agreements, go to or the Trade Agreement pages of the US Trade Representative.

The World Trade Organization maintains a database of all FTAs and Regional Trade Agreements (RTAs). Take a look to find your country.


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Service Providers who will be Listed in the Directory of International Trade Service Providers

  • Energy & Enviro Finland. Disseminates information on clean energy and environmental solutions to combat climate change.
  • ISSA Egypt Group . Services all sectors of the medical supplies, food, diary and maritime services marketplace in Egypt and the Middle East.
  • Kekepana International Services, All aspects of international trade consulting from former U.S. Commercial Service officers. Based in Hawaii.

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Import/Export Specialist

In the FITA Career Headquarters job seekers can now apply for jobs online and post their resume--free of charge--in an exclusive database that will be searched by hundreds of industry employers seeking employees with international degrees and/or related work experience. Featured this week is a listing for a Import/Export Specialist at Mercury Marine in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Click here to browse more than 700 other positions!

Employers - Click here to advertise your job openings on FITA's Career HQ.

Let the jobs come to you! Employers are looking for people with international skills. Post your resume TODAY and reap the rewards of the FITA Career HQ! And with a FITA Career HQ job agent, you can decide what kind of job you are looking for and let the system do the searching for you. Simply set up specific search parameters in a Job Agent, and whenever a job is posted that matches your criteria, you'll be notified automatically via email. It's that easy!

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Resources for Going Global

The U.S. Commercial Service, a division of the International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce, sponsors and participates in many events and webinars that help U.S. exporters sell overseas and help overseas buyers learn about U.S. exports. The Commercial Service has a searchable database of these events worldwide at Below are some upcoming events:

FedEx Life Sciences Certified Trade Mission to China June 21-25, Beijing, Suzhou and Shanghai, China. FedEx and the U.S. Commercial Service are working together to help Life Sciences companies enter China confidently.
Baker & McKenzie International Export Webinar Series - February - June, 2010. Four hour and a half webinar programs for companies involved in international trade.
Leveraging Your Website to Increase International Sales, Boston, MA June 9-10. Learn about simple tools and best practices to make your company's website work for you in attracting foreign buyers, distributors, and customers

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Learn, Network and Enjoy!
New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Western Michigan World Trade Week Events

New York World Trade Week
Los Angeles World Trade Week
Miami World Trade Week
Western Michgan World Trade Week

Since 1933 World Trade Week has been an annual celebration of international trade. Locally organized and supported by the U.S. Commmerical Service, local District Export Councils, local chambers of Commerce, local universities, World Trade Centers and other associations and institutions, World Trade Week is a unique opportunity to attend seminars and networking events. Get involved!!

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Do you have interesting website for International Trade?
Submit Your Website

And don't forget -- if you'd like more information about international trade, go to FITA's Really Useful Links, which has a link library of more than 8,000 sites related to international trade.

Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to others.Published by FITA Online, 172 Fifth Ave., #118, Brooklyn, NY 11217 USA.
Copyright © 2010 GlobalTrade SAS. All rights reserved.