Certificates of Origin

The Certificate of Origin is an often required yet little understood export document.  While usually considered one of those onerous foreign trade details by the exporter, it can be of supreme importance to the importer.  Most countries consider a product’s origin in determining the duty payable.  In extreme situations like boycotts and embargoes, a products origin can determine its very admissibility into a particular market.  Since the name of the game is to make buying our products as easy as possible for our importing customers, savvy exporters take pains to get this important document right.

Like all other export documents, COs are statements that certain events have taken place.  In this case, the “event” is simply that the referenced items were produced in a particular country/countries.  “Produced” may mean manufactured, mined or grown.  It also means produced from totally local content or produced from local and imported content.

Projecting from their own experience, foreign governments designated the Chambers of Commerce in the U.S. as the final authority in ratifying the country of origin as stated by shipper.  The Pike County Chamber offers such ratification of Certificates of Origin free to its members, and for a fee to non-members with whom it is familiar. 

The U.S. Department of Commerce does not oversee the process of Chamber certification and each Chamber is free to set its own rules covering what it will or will not certify.  Since local Chambers count among their members a large number of local businesses and are actually on the scene, the Department of Commerce believes Chambers are in the unique position of being the best possible authority.  The Chamber requires certain forms completed by those who seek our help.  The instructions and requirements ar eposted below. 

As an exporter, you and your overseas customers have a lot of common interests.  Proper documentation of all your shipments is one of them.  COs are becoming increasingly important in the documentation process.  While not all countries require certificates of origin, every country you ship to is still vitally concerned with the origin of goods they import.

Pike County Chamber of Commerce Certificate of Origin Instructions

or more information check out www.export.gov under common export documents. http://export.gov/logistics/eg_main_018121.asp