Export: arranging goods transport

Published by:
Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK
Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK
Statistics Netherlands, CBS
Statistics Netherlands, CBS

When exporting goods, you have three transport options. You can hire a forwarding company, you can use the services of a transport company, or you can transport the goods yourself. Transporting abroad involves transport documents, supply conditions, packaging requirements, and insurance.

You contract a forwarding company

If you let a forwarding company (Fenex, in Dutch) arrange the transport, they will arrange everything for you: transport documents, insurance, and customs procedures. A forwarding company does not transport the goods themselves, the transporting company or carrier does that. The forwarding company will arrange a transporting company and conclude a transport agreement with them. The forwarding company concludes this transport agreement in its own name or in your name.

You hire a transporting company

You choose a mode of transport, and find a transporting company that can execute the transport for you. The transporting company will get the correct transport documents. They possess the relevant licences for road hauliers. You will remain responsible for the customs procedure and any transport insurance you want to take out.

You transport the goods yourself

You will have to arrange everything yourself.

  • You must have the correct transport documents. It depends on the mode of transport (by road, air, rail, or water) what they are.
  • You must have the correct licence(s) for road hauliers.
  • You may have to invest in a means of transport.
  • If you are exporting goods outside the EU, you will have to deal with customs procedures yourself.

Check the packaging requirements

The transporting or expedition company may have special packaging requirements, depending on the mode of transport. Discuss this beforehand. Also check the packaging requirements for your product in the destination country. If you are exporting inside the EU, you must comply with EU legislation as well as the 2014 Packaging Management Decree.

ICC Incoterms® - international delivery conditions

For international transport, make use of the ICC Incoterms®. These are international standards for goods transport, to cover for instance:

  • Who arranges the transport from where to where;
  • Who is responsible for transport insurance, licences, documents and cutoms procedures;
  • At what point the transport liability transfers from seller to buyer.

N.B.: The most recent version of the Incoterms is Incoterms® 2020. If you have been using the ICC Incoterms® 2010, you can continue to do so. They remain valid.

Insure your goods

Check who is responsible for the goods before, during and after transport. Cover your risks, for instance by taking out transport insurance.

Statistics: export development

Value of goods exported to other countries.

Questions relating to this article?

Please contact the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK