Export/Import Terms Company Profile

International Chemical Business Terms

Below is a list of export and import related terms to help you navigate the international chemical business. All terms are listed alphabetically.


Tariff (Rate of Duty)

The ratio used to calculate the amount of tax. According to the type of tax, the base of taxation, which becomes the base for the tax amount calculation, may be determined by price or by quantity.

Tariff Code (H.S. Code, Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Import/Export Harmonized System, Customs Duty Number, international standardized system for the classification of traded products, a standardized system for the names and categories of traded products, commodity code)

See H.S. Code

Temporary Rate

The temporary tax rate established by the Act on Temporary Measures concerning Customs for about 500 articles. It is one of the statutory tariffs together with the general rate of duty and the preferential rate, always applied with priority over the general rate of duty.

THC (Terminal Handling Charge, CY Charge, Empty Container Handling Charge, ECHC, Container Handling Charge)

Surcharge paid by an owner of the goods to a shipping company under the name of work charges, for handling the goods in the container yard managed by the shipping company. The charge varies according to the destination.

The Customs Law

The law that provides necessary matters for proper enforcement of customs procedure regarding the determination, payment, collection and refund of customs duty, and importing and exporting of goods. Along with the Customs Tariff Law, it is a basic law of the customs duty system. The law took effect in 1954.

The Customs Tariff Law

The law that provides matters regarding customs duty tariff rates, base of taxation, tax reductions and exemptions, etc. The law took effect in 1911.

The List of Suspicious End Users (Foreign Users List)

The information including names of foreign companies and organizations who are suspicious of developing mass destruction weapons, provided from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan to exporters. Listed on the website of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and frequently updated. As of 2013, organizations from Afghanistan, United Arab Emirates, Israel, Iran, India, North Korea, Syria, Taiwan, China, Pakistan and Hong Kong are listed. Exporters have an obligation to confirm that the user of the exported goods is not mentioned in the list in advance, and basically, for exporting to organizations mentioned in the list, authorization of the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry is required.

Through Bills of Lading (Combined Bill of Lading, Through B/L)

A type of B/L by which transportation from a place of receipt of goods to the final destination is covered by a single B/L (bill of lading), despite the fact that transportation of the cargo is done by several carriers. By concluding a special contract between each carrier beforehand, the carrier who first receives the goods from the owner can issue a B/L valid up to the final destination.

Tractor Head

A vehicle that attaches and pulls a chassis. Head. (See Trailer.)


The rear part of a type of motor-truck (traction vehicle) with which the front power unit where a driver sits and the rear unit to accommodate the cargo can be separated. The front towing part with the driver’s seat is called tractor. With normal trucks, the front unit with the driver’s seat (cab) and the back unit are connected and cannot be separated. However, the motor-truck type with which front power unit equipped with an engine (tractor) and back unit carrying the cargo (trailer) can be separated is called tractor-and-trailer. It is also called chassis or towed vehicle. Because the front and back units can bend at curves, the radius of rotation is small, making possible a U-turn on roads that have four traffic lanes for each direction. Because the front and rear units can be separated, when unloading the goods (stevedoring) there is advantage that the front power unit is not necessary. Because both of tractor and trailer are legally considered vehicles, each of them have different license plates.

Transit Time

The time spent transiting. In marine transportation, the number of days from departure from the port of loading to arrival at the port of destination.

Transshipment (T/S, Transhipment)

Transferring the cargo on another ship in a port on the way, so that not only one ship is used for transportation from the port of loading to the port of destination. Ports where transshipment is often performed are Singapore, Hong Kong, Pusan, etc.

Triangular Trade (Intermediary Trade, Intermediary Trade, Third-Country Trade)

Intermediating trade from a foreign country to another foreign country. For example, a transaction in which a Japanese company buys goods from China and sells them in the U.S. In such cases, the cargo is exported from China directly to the U.S., but the settlement is intermediated by the Japanese company. Also called a third-country trade.


A type of chassis with three axles for transporting containers (the same as the number of tires when looking from just beside at the chassis, which is the platform under the container). There are also two-axle chassis.
When using a triaxle chassis, heavier goods can be loaded than when using a two–axle chassis. If transportation is done using a triaxle chassis, on a 20-feet container the maximum payload is [〓container gross weight 24,000kg - the container net weight about 2,300kg (an example of an iron container. The weight of the containers varies.) = about 21,700kg] and for a 40 feet container the maximum payload is [container gross weight 30,480kg - the container net weight about 3,800kg (an example of an iron container) = about 26,680kg].