Exporting small consumer goods - any advice?

I'm considering starting up a small social enterprise that would rely on the export of the consumer goods to the US. The volume would not be much or very frequent. Anyone have experience with this type of thing? What's the easy and most economical method? Thanks!

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Thanks Mark & Doug

All good stuff! Thanks to both of you for your suggestions. I'll definitely look into both options.

Probably not worth it

If you are not a national you probably need an S.A. to do the business. You then have La Renta filings twice a month, taxes, ... You may also have issues with import permits for what you export.

My feeling is find someone that is already doing this and work with them.

Many years ago I considered setting up a cooperative that would handle credit card processing, packing and shipping for its members. Also create a web presence for them. I still think it is a good idea but not on my list.

Export advice - thanks

I appreciate your thoughts, fyl. I'll definitely get in contact with some organizations down here to see how they're doing it and go from there. But if anyone else reading this forum has advice, I'm still open to input! Thanks.

Business Export

Is easy in Nicaragua. No need for as S.A. However, You will need a Broker on the Nica Side (around $100) but most of them can function as your S.A. for additional fee (no more than another $75 or so). There is a Manifest document that has to be prepared plus 4 other documents.

Shipping- you can co-load a container but takes almost a month but is cheaper than Air which is about $1.50 a pound. Entering USA you are notified by US Customs your boxes have arrived and ready for pick up. If you go there acting dumb and is your first time importing from Nicaragua they may cut you loose for free! If not then you will need a Broker on the USA side to get your items.(about $150.00). The Customs officers have list of Brokers-It does not hurt to go there and ask questions and get to know people. I was importing to a large City and was lost in the crowd and I switched to smaller city which has only 4-5 officers.If you import to small city get to know your Customs people. (you may not need a broker)

Before CAFTA I had duties of 4-10% of the value (not retail price-your cost you have into product including labor and materials). They were trained and right after CAFTA my stuff came in duty free. Not so on the Nica side but now they know as items imported as 'factors of production' for eventual export to USA are exempt from duties.

There is supposed to be some % of USA content of your finished good or product for CAFTA but US Customs does not research and enforce this thus far.

Finding an established company or people to make what you want is easier way to go. You pay per finished product and can inspect before accepted. Doing it on your own is possible but you will need Spanish language proficiency and spend much time there. Again you can do without SA certainly in the beginning -just pay your people cash at end of week. If they show up all weekdays then they can show up on Saturday which they get nice lunch at quitting time (12 noon). This is what I do to encourage attendance.

When I started I spent over 6 weeks every day working on a venture. I started with one employee.

Good Luck.

I was in the post office...

in Matagalpa today and noticed a poster for a project called Exporta facil, you might want to check with the local post office for more information

-Doug ©

If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate