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A Step by Step Procedure to generate a Shipping bill

Obtaining the “Let Export Order” and “Let Ship Order” can be a hard nut for any exporter who does not know the detailed procedure that follows it. For getting that document, the first and most crucial part is generating the bill of shipping. If the “Let Export Order” is the visa for a freight shipment to another country, then the shipping bill is no less than the passport. Every exporter must know all the nitty-gritty of generating the shipping bill to obtain it in one go. Any fault or mistake in the documents and billing form can not only delay the shipment but can also hamper the reputation of the exporter in the long run. 

The shipping bill is the mandatory document needed for export customs clearance of international freight shipments. There are five types of bill of shipping, and each one is colour-coded as per the nature of the shipment. One can file it either manually or electronically using the available portals with the help of a CHA (Customs House Agent). To know more about the types of bills and their notion, click here. Let us understand the different procedures of filing and generating the shipping bill. 

Exporters should prepare all the documents and bills required for getting the clearance. 

Information Required Before Applying for the Bill

Earlier, the rules and regulations of filing the shipping bill were in the format mentioned in the Shipping Bill and Bill of Export (Form) Regulations, 1991. After the modifications made by the government on 25th March 2019, the forms required for different types of bill of shipping defined the norms of the Amendment Regulations. 

Form SB – I under Regulation 2 is what follows the other documentation for shipping bills. Apart from the form, the exporter has to submit all the required documents as proof of authentication of all the details enlisted in it. Information and legal papers related to the following fields are mandatory. 

  • One has to submit all the details related to the exporter, importer and the CHA. 
  • Information regarding the carrier, transportation and port of shipment is also vital. 
  • The purchase order of the goods and invoice must be there. 
  • A detailed description of the cargo and its items should be descriptive in the form. 
  • Information and documents related to GST (Goods and Services Tax) and Export duty are necessary. 
  • Job work/ Export scheme/re-export details have to be present in the bill. 

Online Procedure of Filing Shipping Bill

In India, the EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) based e-filing services are done through the ICEGATE platform. The procedure is very simple, and if an exporter has hired a CHA for filing the bill of shipping, then there is nothing to stress over. All one has to do is follow a few manageable steps to complete the process. 

  • For first time users of the ICEGATE platform, initial registration is mandatory. The CHAs need to register themselves using their license number. If any exporter is willing to file the shipping bill by himself, he must register himself using the IEC (Import Export Code) and ADC (Authorised Dealer Code).
  •  Submit the e-form and all the scanned copies of the demanded documents. The documents must be duly signed by the exporter or his CHA, whoever is filing the bill of shipping.
  • The verification process starts with the complete submission of all the documents. 
  • Retain the printed copies of the verified checklist along with the shipping bill number. 
  • For any other queries related to the procedure, the exporters must contact the service centre. 

Offline Procedure of Filing Shipping Bill 

Offline submission of the bill of shipping has become almost extinct these days, given the online portal is much more convenient and fast. However, some traders still prefer the manual filing of the shipping bill. In such a case, the CHA will be able to guide one in a better way. Every documentation remains the same in the offline procedure. The only difference is that one has to rush to the customs department office to submit the documents. 

Important Steps Before Generating the Bill  

  • Before the customs department generates the bill of shipping, they take their time to assess the application and the documents. It may take a couple of days or more to complete this process.
  • In case the export goods fall under the DEEC (Duty Exemption Entitlement Certificate) or DEPB (Duty Entitlement Pass Book Scheme), the processing will continue under the DEEC group. 
  • The customs officer also has the right to assess the value and detailed description of the goods. He may also collect samples of the material and send it for tests, keeping the process on hold. 
  • Once the examination is complete, the customs department issues the “Let Export Order”. 

The shipping bill is one of the most vital documents that the export has to acquire from the customs clearance department. It is always advisable to take the help of a shipping service provider or CHA to complete the procedure without any unnecessary hiccups!