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Glossary of Trade & Shipping Terms - F

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  • Factoring - Factoring is the discounting of a foreign account receivable that does not involve a draft. The exporter transfers title to its foreign accounts receivable to a factoring house for cash at a discount from the face value. Factoring is often done without recourse to the exporter. Export factoring allows an exporter to ship on "open account," by which goods are shipped without guarantee of payment (that is, a letter of credit). The factor assumes financial ability of the customer to pay and handles collections on the receivables. See: Factoring House. Forfaiting.
  • Factoring Houses - Certain companies which purchase export receivables (e.g., the invoices to foreign buyers) at a discounted price, usually about two to four percent less than their face value.
  • Fair Value - The reference against which U.S. purchase prices of imported merchandise are compared during an antidumping investigation. Generally expressed as the weighted average of the exporter's domestic market prices, or prices of exports to third countries during the period of investigation. In some cases fair value is the constructed value. Constructed value is used if there are no, or virtually no, home market or third country sales or if the number of such sales made at prices below the cost of production is so great that remaining sales above the cost of production provide an inadequate basis for comparison. See: Tariff Act of 1930.
  • FAM Tour - Familiarization tour for travel agents or journalists planned and executed by a destination or region, usually in cooperation with an international airline.
  • Fast Track - Fast track procedures for approval of trade agreements were included by Congress in trade legislation in 1974, in 1979, and again in the 1988 Trade Act. Fast track provides two guarantees essential to the successful negotiation of trade agreements: (1) a vote on implementing legislation within a fixed period of time, and (2) a vote, up or down, with no amendments to that legislation. Provisions in the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 include that the foreign country request negotiation of an FTA and that the President give the Congress a 60-legislative-day notice of intent to negotiate an FTA. During the 60-legislative-day period, either committee can disapprove fast track authority by a majority vote. Disapproval would likely end the possibility of FTA negotiations. The 60-legislative-days can translate into five to ten months of calendar time, depending on the Congressional schedule. Formal negotiations would begin following this 60-day Congressional consideration period.
  • Feasibility Studies - See: Trade and Development Agency.
  • Federacion Mundial de Instituciones Financieras de Desarollo - See: World Federation of Development Financing Institutions.
  • Federal Grain Inspection Service - FGIS certifies that grain produced in the United States meets the official United States Standards for Grain. As part of its responsibilities, FGIS works with international traders. Before any grain can be exported from the United States, it must first be certified by FGIS as having met a specific standard. FGIS staff explain the national inspection system, U.S. grain standards, and commodity inspection programs; conduct briefings and tours; assess foreign inspection and weighing techniques; and respond to inquiries about quality and quantity of U.S. grain exports. FGIS agencies in eight states are delegated authority to perform official export services at ports.
  • Federal Maritime Commission - The FMC is an independent agencys which regulates oceanborne transportation in the foreign commerce and in the domestic offshore trade of the United States.
  • Final Determination - The International Trade Administration makes a final determination after the investigation of sales at "less than fair value" and the receipt of comments from interested parties. This determination usually is made within 75 days after the date a preliminary determination is made. However, if the preliminary determination was affirmative, the exporters who account for a significant proportion of the merchandise under consideration may request, in writing, a postponement of this determination. If the preliminary determination was negative, the petitioner may likewise request a postponement. In neither case can this postponement be more than 135 days after the date of the preliminary determination. If the final determination is affirmative and follows a negative preliminary determination, the matter is referred to the International Trade Commission for a determination of the injury caused or threatened by the sales at less than fair value. (Had the preliminary determination been affirmative, the ITC would have begun its investigation at that time.) Not later than 45 days after the date the International Trade Administration makes an affirmative final determination, in a case where the preliminary determination also was affirmative, the International Trade Commission must render its decision on injury. Where the preliminary determination was negative, the ITC must render a decision not later than 75 days after the affirmative final determination. A negative final determination by the Assistant Secretary for Import Administration terminates an antidumping investigation. See: Tariff Act of 1930.
  • Fines, Penalties, and Forfeitures System - The Fines, Penalties, and Forfeitures System, FPFS, a part of Customs' Automated Commercial System, is used to assess, control, and process penalties resulting from violations of law or Customs regulations. FPFS provides retrieval of case information for monitoring case status.
  • Five-K Countries 5(k) Countries - Those countries as defined under Section 5(k) of the Export Administration Act. Such countries are eligible for some or all of the same treatment as CoCom countries in relation to export control requirements if those countries maintain comparable export control programs. See: Coordinating Committee on Multilateral Export Controls.
  • Flag of Convenience - A ship registered under the flag of a nation which offers conveniences in the areas of taxes, crew, and safety requirements.
  • Fondo Financiero Para el Desarrollo de la Cuenca del Plata - FONPLATA (English: Plata Basin Financial Development Fund) finances prefeasibility and feasiblity studies, engineering designs, and projects in its member countries (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay). The Fund encourages cofinancing with international development institutions to increase project impact. Loan financing is available for infrastructure, industrial, livestock education, and health projects. FONPLATA was established in 1976; headquarters are in Sucre, Bolivia. The Fund is an outgrowth of the April 1969 Plata Basin Treaty (entered into force, August 1970) which sought to coordinate development of the region, including navigation, control of acquatic resources, and use of natural resources.
  • Fondo para el Fomento de las Exportaciones de Productos Manufacturados - FOMEX (the Export Fund), is a trust established by the Mexican government to increase employment and to increase the balance of payments and the international reserve levels. FOMEX uses loans and loan guarantees to help exporters of manufactured goods and services and importers who wish to substitute imports with nationally produced goods.
  • Food and Agricultural Organization - The FAO was established in 1945, as a specialized agency of the United Nations to combat hunger and malnutrition. The FAO serves as a coordinating body between government representatives, scientific groups, and non-governmental organizations to carry out development programs relating to food and agriculture. Headquarters are in Rome, Italy.
  • Food For Development - See: Food for Peace.
  • Food for Peace - The "Food for Peace" program (also known as "P.L. 480), originally established by the 1954 Agricultural Trade and Development Act, is the primary means by which the U.S. provides foreign food assistance. The three primary objectives of the program are to: (a) expand U.S. agricultural exports, (b) provide humanitarian relief, and (c) aid the economic development of developing countries. Commodities are transferred in two ways: - By government-to-government long-term concessional financing or for local currencies in which priority is given to developing countries which demonstrate the greatest need for food, are undertaking measures to improve their food security and agricultural development, and are potential commercial markets for U.S. agricultural commodities -- Title I, administered by the Department of Agriculture; and - Donations or grants, including: + Donations of food commodities for distribution in meeting either emergency conditions or international cooperative non-emergency assistance -- Title II, administered by AID; and + Providing food assistance on a grant basis to least developed countries through government-to-government agreements. Proceeds derived from sales on the local market may be used to support a variety of economic development and related activities in the recipient countries -- Title III, administered by AID. This assistance is sometimes known as "Food For Development." See: Food for Progress Section 416
  • Food For Progress - The "Food for Progress" program, established by the 1985 Farm Bill, is carried out by the Department of Agriculture, using the authority of either Public Law 480 or Section 416 of the Agricultural Act of 1949. The program donates surplus government-owned agricultural commodities or Title I (of P.L. 480) funds to needy countries for development and agricultural reform purposes. Food for Progress operates in a less restrictive manner than either P.L. 480 or Section 416. See: Food for Peace Section 416.
  • Force Majeure - The title of a standard clause in marine contract exempting the parties for non-fulfillment of their obligations as a result of conditions beyond their control, such as earthquakes, floods, or war.
  • Foreign Access Zone - FAZ is a term adopted by Japan for its form of free trade zone. FAZs are the outgrowth of Japan's effort to improve its trade balance and to stimulate regional economic areas. FAZs are intended to be established around airports and seaports, with facilities (warehouses, cargo-sorting, distribution, import processing, wholesale, design-in centers, exhibition halls) on an international scale. The FAZ concept -- which emphasizes imports rather than the processing and job creation -- extends from the July 1992 Law on Extraordinary Measures for the Promotion of Imports and the Facilitation of Foreign Direct Investment in Japan. Passage of the law is linked to the Structural Impediments Initiative (SII). See: Free Trade Zones Structural Impediments Initiative.
  • Foreign Affairs Administrative Support - The FAAS program is the mechanism used by the Department of State (DOS) to define the additional costs it incurs for providing services necessary to support the overseas operations of agencies external to DOS. Under FAAS, DOS funds core costs required for its own programs while the supported agencies fund incremental costs of their service requirements. These latter costs are shared through the application of workload factors which measure agency participation in the services.
  • Foreign Affiliate - See: Affiliate.
  • Foreign Affiliate of a Foreign Parent - A foreign affiliate of a foreign parent is, with reference to a given U.S. affiliate, any member of the affiliated foreign group owning the U.S. affiliate that is not a foreign parent of the U.S. affiliate.
  • Foreign Agricultural Service - The FAS, an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, collects foreign market information regarding agricultural production and trade, develops foreign markets for U.S. agricultural products, and represents U.S. agricultural interests overseas and in multilateral fora. FAS maintains over 60 counselor and attache posts, located in U.S. embassies and consulates, and about fifteen Agricultural Trade Offices (ATOs) which provide market development and trade promotion services in overseas locations. FAS also administers USDA's export credit and concessional sales programs. FAS headquarters are located in Washington, D.C.
  • Foreign and Commonwealth Office - The FCO, equivalent to the U.S. State Department, is Britain's Diplomatic Service, with posts in about 170 countries. Among its functions, the FCO supports overseas trade and export promotion services in cooperation with Britain's Department of Trade and Industry.
  • Foreign Assets Control - The Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, OFAC, administers sanctions programs involving specific countries and restricts the involvement of U.S. persons in third country strategic exports.
  • Foreign Assistance Act of 1991 - This Act replaced the Support for East European Democracy (SEED) Act. The Foreign Assistance Act allows support to 26 countries, including all East European nations and most of the Soviet republics, but not to the Soviet Union itself.
  • Foreign Availability - The Bureau of Export Administration conducts reviews to determine the foreign availability of selected commodities or technology subject to export control. The reviews use four criteria to determine foreign availability: comparable quality, availability-in-fact, foreign source, and adequacy of available quantities that would render continuation of the U.S. control ineffective in meeting its intended purpose. A positive determination of foreign availability means that a non-U.S. origin item of comparable quality may be obtained by one or more proscribed countries in quantities sufficient to satisfy their needs so that U.S. exports of such item would not make a significant contribution to the military potential of such countries. A positive determination may result in the decontrol of a U.S. product that has been under export control, or the approval of an export license. However, the control may be maintained if the President invokes the national security override provision of the Act. Beginning with the 1977 amendments to the Export Administration Act, the Congress directed that products with foreign availability be identified and decontrolled unless essential to national security. In January 1983, a program to assess the foreign availability of specific products was established within the Office of Export Administration, now the Bureau of Export Administration, or BXA. Further, 1985 amendments to the Act directed that an Office of Foreign Availability be created.
  • Foreign Bank Supervision Enhancement Act - The FBSEA, passed in 1991, increased the Federal Reserve's supervisory powers over foreign banks by: (a) requiring Federal Reserve review before a foreign bank enters or expands in the United States; (b) tightening the standards for entry and expansion that must be considered by the Federal Reserve; (c) requiring Federal Reserve Board approval of U.S. representative offices of foreign banks; and (d) requiring that each U.S. office of a foreign bank be examined at least once a year by the Federal Reserve. See: International Banking Act.
  • Foreign Broadcast Information Service - FBIS and the Joint Publication Research Service (JPRS) publish political, military, economic, environmental, and sociological new, commentary, and other information, and scientific and technical data reports. All FBIS and JPRS information is obtained from foreign radio and television broadcasts, news agency transmissions, newspapers, books, and periodicals.
  • Foreign Buyer Program - The Foreign Buyer Program, FBP, is a joint industry-International Trade Administration program to assist exporters in meeting qualified foreign purchasers for their product or service at trade shows held in the United States. ITA selects leading U.S. trade shows in industries with high export potential. Each show selected for the FBP receives promotion through overseas mailings, U.S. embassy and regional commercial newsletters, and other promotional techniques. ITA trade specialists counsel participating U.S. exhibitors.
  • Foreign Claims Settlement Commission - The FCSC is authorized to determine claims of United States nationals for loss of property in specific foreign countries. These losses have occurred either as a result of nationalization of property by foreign governments or from damage and loss of property as a result of military operations in specific conflicts. The Commission is an independent quasi-judicial agency within the Justice Department.
  • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act - The FCPA prohibits U.S. individuals, companies and direct foreign subsidiaries of U.S. companies from offering, promising, or paying anything of value to any foreign government official in order to obtain or retain business.
  • Foreign Direct Investment in the United States - Foreign direct investment in the United States is the ownership or control, directly or indirectly, by a single foreign person (an individual, or related group of individuals, company, or government) of 10 percent or more of the voting securities of an incorporated U.S. business enterprise or an equivalent interest in an unincorporated U.S. business enterprise, including real property. Such a business is referred to as a U.S. affiliate of a foreign direct investor. See: Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States Foreign Person Portfolio Investment.
  • Foreign Disclosure and Technical Information System - FORDTIS is a classified information system that contains an automated database of munition and dual-use export licenses. The system is maintained by the Defense Department's Defense Technology Security Administration. See: Defense Technology Security Administration Export Control Automated Support System.
  • Foreign Economic Trends - FETs are reports prepared by U.S. embassies abroad to describe foreign country economic and commercial trends and trade and investment climates. The reports describe current economic conditions; provide updates on the principal factors influencing developments and the possible impacts on American exports; review newly announced foreign government policies as well as consumption, investment, and foreign debt trends.
  • Foreign Exchange Option - A foreign exchange option is an arrangement in which a purchaser and a seller of foreign currencies agree on a specific rate of exchange at a future date. The purchaser may choose to exercise or pass up the option -- thus setting a limit on unfavorable exchange rates. The seller is given a fee for tendering the option. Purchasers may exercise the option at any time -- in the European option, currency exchange is made on the originally established date; in the American option, exchange is made within a couple of days of the purchaser exercising the option. See: Forward Exchange Rate.
  • Foreign Exports - Exports of foreign merchandise (re-exports), consist of commodities of foreign origin which have entered the United States for consumption or into Customs bonded warehouses or U.S. Foreign Trade Zones, and which, at the time of exportation, are in substantially the same condition as when imported.
  • Foreign Flag - A reference to a carrier not registered in the United States that flies the American flag. The term applies to air and sea transportation.
  • Foreign Independent Tour - A foreign independent tour, FIT, is a prepaid travel arrangement, tailored to meet a traveler's specific wishes.
  • Foreign Investment - See: Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States Foreign Direct Investment in the United States Net Foreign Investment.
  • Foreign Investment Advisory Service - FIAS was established in 1986 as a joint facility of the International Finance Corporation and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency to help developing countries increase the inflow of foreign investment. The Service provides advice at the request of member governments on formulating a general framework of legal, accounting, and regulatory policies and institutions and procedures to attract and assess investment interest.
  • Foreign Market Development Program - FMD (also known as the Cooperator Program) is one of several Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs designed to encourage development, maintenance and expansion of commercial export markets for U.S. agricultural commodities and products. Under FMD, USDA considers proposals with preference given to activities promising early results and lasting benefits in commercial export markets. Funds may be used for trade servicing, consumer promotion, market research, and to provide technical assistance to actual or potential foreign purchasers. While agreements under the Cooperator Program may extend from one to five years, types of activities and amounts of funds are annually negotiated between the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) and participants (cooperators) and authorized in annual marketing plans. The marketing plans must set forth the objectives and describe the specific project in detail. The amount of funding provided by FAS varies, dependent upon circumstances and whether the activities are characterized as generic or market promotion.
  • Foreign Market Research - See: Industry Subsector Analysis.
  • Foreign Market Value - The price at which merchandise is sold, or offered for sale, in the principal markets of the country from which it is exported. If information on foreign home market sales is not useful, the foreign market value is based on prices of exports to third countries or constructed value. Adjustments for quantities sold, circumstances of sales, and differences in the merchandise can be made to those prices to ensure a proper comparison with the prices of goods exported to the United States. See: Tariff Act of 1930.
  • Foreign Military Sales - See: Conventional Arms Transfer.
  • Foreign-Owned Affiliate in the U. S. - A business in the United States in which there is sufficient foreign investment to be classified as direct foreign investment. To determine fully the foreign owners of a U.S. affiliate, three entities must be identified: the foreign parent, the ultimate beneficial owner, and the foreign parent group. All these entities are "persons" in the broad sense: thus, they may be individuals; business enterprises; governments; religious, charitable, and other nonprofit organizations; estates and trusts; and associated groups. A U.S. affiliate may have an ultimate beneficial owner (UBO) that is not the immediate foreign parent; moreover, the affiliate may have several ownership chains above it, if it is owned at least 10 percent by more than one foreign person. In such cases, the affiliate may have more than one foreign parent, UBO, and/or foreign parent group. See: Foreign Parent Foreign Parent Group.
  • Foreign Parent - The first foreign person or entity outside the United States in an affiliate's ownership chain that has direct investment in the affiliate. The foreign parent consists only of the first person or entity outside the United States in the affiliate's ownership chain; all other affiliated foreign persons are excluded.
  • Foreign Parent Group - A foreign parent group, FPG, consists of: (1) the foreign parent, (2) any foreign person or entity, proceeding up the foreign parent's ownership chain, that owns more than 50 percent of the party below it, up to and including the ultimate beneficial owner (UBO), and (3) any foreign person or entity, proceeding down the ownership chain(s) of each of these members, that is owned more than 50 percent by the party above it. A particular U.S. affiliate may have several ownership chains above it, if it is owned at least 10 percent by more than one foreign party. In such cases, the affiliate may have more than one foreign parent, UBO, and/or foreign parent group.
  • Foreign Person - A foreign person is any person resident outside the United States or subject to the jurisdiction of a country other than the United States. "Person" is any individual, branch, partnership, association, associated group, estate, trust, corporation, or other organization (whether or not organized under the laws of any State), and any government (including a foreign government, the U.S. Government, a State or local government, and any agency, corporation, financial institution, or other entity or instrumentality thereof, including a government sponsored agency.) See: Foreign Parent Foreign Parent Group U.S. Affiliate.
  • Foreign.
  • Foreign Sales Corporation - An FSC is a corporation created to secure U.S. tax exemption on a portion of earnings derived from the sale of U.S. products in foreign markets. To qualify for special tax treatment, an FSC must be a foreign corporation, maintain an office outside the U.S. territory, maintain a summary of its permanent books of account at the foreign office, and have at least one director resident outside of the U.S. There are some variations:- Small FSCs are the same as FSCs, except that small FSCs must file an election with the IRS, and have their tax exemption limited to the income generated by $5 million or less in gross export revenues. Small FSCs do not have to meet foreign managment or foreign economic process requirements but must fulfill other requirements. - Shared FSCs are FSCs which are "shared" by 25 or fewer unrelated exporter "shareholders" for the purpose of reducing costs while obtaining the full tax benefits of an FSC.
  • Foreign Service - The Foreign Service supports the President and the Secretary of State in pursuing America's foreign policy objectives. Foreign service functions include: representing U.S. interests; operating U.S. overseas missions; assisting Americans abroad; public diplomacy and reporting; communicating and negotiating political, economic, consular, administrative, cultural, and commercial affairs. The Foreign Service comprises officers from the Departments of State, Commerce, and Agriculture and the United States Information Service. See: Commercial Officers Economic Officers.
  • Foreign Service Institute - FSI was founded in 1946 to train U.S. foreign and civil service officials. Training courses cover administrative, consular, economic, commercial, and political work, foreign languages, and diplomatic life overseas.
  • Foreign Service National - Host-country national employed by a U.S. mission overseas.
  • Foreign Trade Division - FTD is the division in the Commerce Department's Census Bureau which compiles and disseminates official U.S. import and export statistics. The division also maintains international commodity classification systems and conducts methods research, including international comparability of trade statistics.
  • Foreign Trade Zones - FTZs are the U.S. form of free trade zones. These zones are restricted-access sites in or near ports of entry, that operate under public utility principles to create and maintain employment by encouraging operations in the U.S. which might otherwise have been carried on abroad. Goods brought into a zone for a bona fide Customs reason are exempt from state and local ad valorem tax. The zones are licensed by the Commerce Department's Foreign-Trade Zones Board and operate under the supervision of the Customs Service. Quota restrictions do not normally apply to foreign goods stored in zones, but the Board can limit or deny zone use in specific cases on public interest grounds. Domestic goods moved into a zone for export may be considered exported upon entering the zone for purposes of excise tax rebates and drawback. A foreign trade "subzone" is a non-contiguous zone site located at a manufacturing plant. See: Free Trade Zones.
  • Foreign Traders Index - The foreign traders index is the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service headquarters compilation of overseas contact files, intended for use by domestic businesses. The FTI includes background information on foreign companies, address, contact person, sales figures, size of company, and products by SIC code.
  • Foreign Trade Statistical Reporting - See: Shipper's Export Declaration.
  • Forfaiting - Forfaiting is a form of supplier credit in which an exporter surrenders possession of export receivables, which are usually guaranteed by a bank in the importer's country, by selling them at a discount to a "forfaiter" in exchange for cash. These instruments may also carry the guarantee of the foreign government. In a typical forfaiting transaction, an exporter approaches a forfaiter before completing a transaction's structure. Once the forfaiter commits to the deal and sets the discount rate, the exporter can incorporate the discount into the selling price. Forfaiters usually work with bills of exchange or promissory notes, which are unconditional and easily transferable debt instruments that can be sold on the secondary market. Three primary differences between export factoring and forfaiting are:- Factors usually want access to a large percentage of an exporter's business, while most forfaiters will work on a one-shot basis; -Forfaiters generally work with medium and long-term receivables (180 days to seven years), while factors work with short-term receivables (up to 180 days). Payment terms usually reflect the type of product involved: forfaiters usually work with capital goods, commodities, and large projects; factors work mostly with consumer goods. - Most factors do not have strong capabilities in developing regions of the world where legal and financial frameworks are inadequate and credit informaiotn is not readily available through affiliate factors. However, since forfaiters usually require a bank guarantee, most are willing to work with receivables from these countries. See: Factoring.
  • Former Soviet Union - The FSU is a collective reference to republics comprising the former Soviet Union. The term has been used both including and excluding the Baltic republics (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania); the term includes the other twelve republics: Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Kirgizstan, and Georgia.
  • Forty-Foot Equivalent Unit - See: Twenty-Foot Equivalent Unit.
  • Forward Exchange Rate - A forward exchange rate is the price set between two parties for delivery of a foreign currency on an agreed future date. If that date will occur within a week, the agreement is called a spot transaction; if the date is more than a week in the future, the arrangement is called a forward exchange transaction. See: Foreign Exchange Option.
  • Foul Bill of Lading - A receipt for goods issued by a carrier with an indication that the goods were damaged when received.
  • Framework Agreement- Tokyo Round: - The Tokyo Round called for consideration to be given "to improvements in the international framework for the conduct of world trade." Four separate agreements make up what is known as the "framework agreement." They concern: (1) differential and more favorable treatment for, and reciprocity and fuller participation by, developing countries in the international framework for trade; (2) trade measures taken for balance of payments purposes; (3) safeguard actions for development purposes; and (4) an understanding on notification, consultation, dispute settlement, and surveillance in the GATT.- Enterprise for the Americas Initiative: Under the umbrella of the Enterprise for the Americas Initiative the United States and interested Western hemisphere countries are negotiating bilateral framework agreements which establish agreed upon stages for eliminating counter-productive barriers to trade and investment. They also provide a forum for bilateral dispute settlement. 'Generally, the bilateral framework agreements contain similar objectives. They are based on a statement of agreed principles regarding the benefits of open trade and investment, increased importance of services to economies, the need for adequate intellectual property rights protection, the importance of observing and promoting internationally-recognized worker rights, and the desirability of resolving trade and investment problems expeditiously. The parties establish a Council on Trade and Investment to monitor trade and investment relations, hold consultations on specific trade and investment matters of interest to both sides, and work toward removing impediments to trade and investment flows. Framework agreements do not bind signatories to implement specific trade liberalization measures.
  • Franc Zone - The Franc Zone (French: Zone Franc, ZF) is a monetary union among countries whose currencies are linked to the French franc at a fixed rate of exchange: Benin, Burkina, the Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, France, Gabon, Cote d'Ivoire, Mali, Niger, Senegal, and Togo. These countries have agreed to hold their reserves primarily in French francs and to transact exchanges on the Paris market. The zone was established in May 1951 under the auspices of a French government agency: Comite Monetaire de ZF.
  • Free Alongside Ship - Free Alongside Ship, FAS, at a named port of export. Under FAS, the seller quotes a price for the goods that includes charges for delivery of the goods alongside a vessel at the port of departure. The seller handles the cost of unloading and wharfage; loading, ocean transportation, and insurance are left to the buyer. FAS is also a method of export and import valuation.
  • Free Carrier ... (named point) - Free Carrier, FCA, to a named place. This term replaces the former "FOB named inland port" to designate the seller's responsibility for the cost of loading goods at the named shipping point. It may be used for multimodal transport, container stations, and any mode of transport, including air.
  • Freedom Support Act - The FSA, signed into law in October 1992, authorizes a range of programs to support free market and democratic reforms in Russia, Ukraine, Armenia, and other states of the former Soviet Union.
  • Free In - A pricing term indicating that the charterer of a vessel is responsible for the cost of loading goods onto the vessel.
  • Free In and Out - A pricing term indicating that the charterer of a vessel is responsible for the cost of loading and unloading goods from the vessel.
  • Free on Board - Free On Board (FOB) at a named port of export. The seller quotes the buyer a price that covers all costs up to and including delivery of goods aboard a vessel at a port. FOB is also a method of export valuation.
  • FOB Airport - FOB Airport is based on the same principle as the ordinary FOB term. The seller's obligations include delivering the goods to the air carrier at the airport of departure. The risk of loss of or damage to the goods is transferred from the seller to the buyer when the goods have been so delivered.
  • Free of Particular Average - F.P.A., a type of marine insurance, is the minimum coverage in use and covers total and partial losses if the ship carrying an exporter's goods is involved in a collision or fire, or is stranded or sunk. See: Marine Cargo Insurance.
  • Free on Rail/Free on Truck - These terms are synonymous, since the word "truck" relates to the railway wagons. The terms should only be used then the goods are to be carried by rail.
  • Free Out - A pricing term indicating that the quoted prices includes the cost of unloading the goods from the vessel.
  • Free Ports - Free ports are a form of free trade zone that usually encompass an entire port area (examples include Hong Kong and Singapore). See: Free Trade Zones.
  • Free Trade Agreement - An FTA is an arrangement which establishes unimpeded exchange and flow of goods and services between trading partners regardless of national borders. An FTA does not (as opposed to a common market) address labor mobility across borders, common currencies or uniform standards or other common policies such as taxes. Member countries of a free trade area apply their individual tariff rates to countries outside the free trade area.
  • Free Trade Area - A free trade area is a cooperative arrangement among two or more nations, pursuant to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, whereby trade barriers are removed among the members. The arrangement generally includes a customs union with a common external tariff, although there are exceptions in which members maintain individually separate tariff schedules for external countries.
  • Free Trade Zones - "Free Trade Zones" (sometimes called "customs free zones" or "duty free zones") is a generic term referring to special commercial and industrial areas at which special customs procedures allow the importation of foreign merchandise (including raw materials, components, and finished goods) without the requirement that duties be paid immediately. If the merchandise is later exported, duty free treatment is given to reexports. The zones are usually located in or near ports of entry. Merchandise brought into these zones may be stored, exhibited, assembled, processed or used in manufacture prior to reexport or entry into the national customs territory. When manufacturing activity occurs in free trade zones, it usually involves a combination of foreign and domestic merchandise, and usually requires special governmental authority. Types of free trade zones include: foreign trade zones (and foreign trade subzones); free ports; and transit zones. See: Drawback Economic Zones Export Processing Zones Foreign Access Zones Foreign Trade Zones Free Ports Free Trade Area Transit Zones.
  • Freight All Kinds - FAK is a shipping classification. Goods classified FAK are usually charged higher rates than those marked with a specific classification and are frequently in a container which includes various classes of cargo.
  • Freight Carriage ... paid to - Like C & F, "Freight/Carriage paid to ..." means that the seller pays the freight for the carriage of the goods to the named destination. However, the risk of loss of or damage to the goods, as well as of any cost increases, is transferred from the seller to the buyer when the goods have been delivered into the custody of the first carrier and not at the ship's rail. The term can be used for all modes of transport including multi-modal operations and container or "roll on-roll off" traffic by trailer and ferries. When the seller has to furnish a bill of lading, waybill or carrier's receipt, he duly fulfills this obligation by presenting such a document issued by the person with whom he has contracted for carriage to the named destination.
  • Freight Carriage ... and insurance paid to - This term is the same as "Freight/Carriage Paid to ..." but with the addition that the seller has to procure transport insurance against the risk of loss of damage to the goods during the carriage. The seller contracts with the insurer and pays the insurance premium.
  • Freight Forwarder - An independent business which handles export shipments for compensation. At the request of the shipper, the forwarder makes the actual arrangements and provides the necessary services for expediting the shipment to its overseas destination. The forwarder takes care of all documentation needed to move the shipment from origin to destination, making up and assembling the necessary documentation for submission to the bank in the exporter's name. The forwarder arranges for cargo insurance, makes the necessary overseas communications, and advises the shipper on overseas requirements of marking and labeling. The forwarder operates on a fee basis paid by the exporter and often receives an additional percentage of the freight charge from the common carrier. An export freight forwarder must be licensed by the Federal Maritime Commission to handle ocean freight and by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to handle air freight. An ocean freight forwarder dispatches shipments from the United States via common carriers, books or arranges space for the shipments, and handles the shipping documentation.
  • F - Free Out
  • F.P.A. - Free of Particular Average
  • F/X - Foreign Exchange
  • FA - Food and Agricultural Organization
  • FAAS - Foreign Affairs Administrative Support
  • FAK - Freight All Kinds
  • FAS - Foreign Agricultural Service, Free Alongside Ship
  • FAZ - Foreign Access Zone
  • FBIS - Foreign Broadcast Information Service
  • FBP - Foreign Buyer Program
  • FBSEA - Foreign Bank Supervision Enhancement Act
  • FC - Foreign and Commonwealth Office
  • FCA - Free Carrier
  • FCPA - Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
  • FCSC - Foreign Claims Settlement Commission
  • FDIUS - Foreign Direct Investment in the United States
  • FEMA - Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • FEMIDE - Federacion Mundial de Instituciones Financieras de, Desarollo
  • FET - Foreign Economic Trends
  • FFP - Food For Progress
  • FGIS - Federal Grain Inspection Service
  • FI - Free In
  • FI - Free In and Out
  • FIAS - Foreign Investment Advisory Service
  • FIATA - Federation Internationale des Associations de Transitaires, et Assimilies
  • FIT - Foreign Independent Tour
  • FMC - Federal Maritime Commission
  • FMD - Foreign Market Development Program
  • FMS - Foreign Military Sales
  • FMV - Foreign Market Value
  • FOB - Free on Board
  • FOGS - Functioning of the GATT System
  • FOMEX - Fondo para el Fomento de las Exportaciones de Productos, Manufacturados
  • FONPLATA - Fondo Financiero Para el Desarrollo de la Cuenca del Plata
  • FOR/FOT - Free on Rail/Free on Truck
  • FORDTIS - Foreign Disclosure and Technical Information System
  • FOREX - Foreign Exchange
  • FRA - Forward (or Future) Rate Agreement
  • FS - Foreign Service Officer
  • FSA - Freedom Support Act
  • FSC - Foreign Sales Corporation
  • FSI - Foreign Service Institute
  • FSN - Foreign Service National
  • FSs - Feasibility Studies
  • FSU - Former Soviet Union
  • FT - Foreign Trade Organization
  • FTA - Free Trade Agreement/Area
  • FTC - Federal Trade Commission
  • FTD - Foreign Trade Division
  • FTI - Foreign Traders Index
  • FTSR - Foreign Trade Statistical Reporting
  • FTZ - Foreign Trade Zone
  • FTZ-SZ - Foreign Trade Zone-Subzone
  • F. & D. - Freight and demurrage
  • F. & A.P. - Fire and allied perils
  • f.a. - Free alongside
  • F.a.a. - Free of all average
  • f.a.c. - Fast as you can
  • F.A.O. - Food and agriculture Organization (U.N.)
  • f.a.q. - Fair average quality
  • f.a.s. - Free alongside ship, Firsts and seconds (American lumber)
  • f.c. & s. - Free of capture and seizure
  • F.C.A.R. - Free of claim for accident reported
  • F.C.I. - Full container loads
  • F.C.I.I. - Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute
  • F.C.V. - Full contract value, Full completed value
  • f.d. - Free discharge. Free delivery. Free despatch. Free docks
  • F.D.O. - For declaration purposes only
  • f.f.a. - Free from alongside, Free foreign agency
  • F.F.O. - Fixed and floating objects
  • F.G.A. - Foreign general average
  • f.h. - Fore hatch
  • f.i - Free-in
  • f.i.a. - Full interest admitted
  • f.i.b. - Free into bunkers. Free into barge
  • F.I.C.S. - Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers
  • F.I.L. - Foreign insurance legislation
  • f.i.o. - Free-in-and-out
  • f.i.o.s. - Free in and out stowed
  • f.i.o.s.t. - Free in and out stowed and/or trimmed
  • f.i.o.t. - Free in and out trimmed
  • f.i.t. - Free of income tax
  • f.i.w. - Free in wagon
  • F.L.E. - Fire, lightning and explosion
  • f.o. - For orders, Firm offer, Full out terms (grain trade)
  • f.o.b. - free on board
  • f.o.c. - Free on car, Free of charge
  • F.O.C. - Flag of convenience, Free ofcommission, Free of charge, Free of claims
  • f.o.d. - Free of damage
  • F.O.M. - Flag, ownership and management
  • F.O.N.A.S.B.A. - Federation of National Association of Shipbrokers and Agents
  • f.o.q. - Free on quay
  • f.o.r. - Free on rail
  • f.o.r.t. - Full out rye terms (grain trade)
  • f.o.s. - Free on steamer
  • F.O.S.F.A. - Federation of Oils, Seeds & Fats Associations
  • f.o.t. - Free on truck
  • f.o.w. - Free on wagon. First open water
  • F.P. - Fully Paid. Floating (or open) policy
  • F.P.A. - Free of particular average
  • F.P.I.L. - Full premium if lost
  • F.P.T. - Forepeak tank
  • f.r. & c.c. - Free of riots and civil commotions
  • F.R.C. - Free of reported casualty
  • F.R.O. - Fire risk only
  • f.r.o.f - Fire risk on freight
  • f.s.l. - Full signed line (insurance)
  • F.S.R. & C.C. - Free of strikes, riots and civil commotions
  • f.t. - Full terms; despatch money, payable on all time saved on the chartered time for loading and discharging the cargo
  • F.T.A. - Freight Transport Association and Agents
  • f.t.r.r. & i. - For their repective rights and interests
  • F.V.C. - Fishing vessel clauses
  • f.w.d. - Fresh water damage
  • f.w.l. - Full written line (insurance)
  • F.W.P.C.A. - Federal Water Pollution Control Act (USA)
  • F.W.T. & G.D. - Fair wear, tear and gradual deterioration
  • F/R - Freight release
  • Fac. - Facultative
  • Fac./oblig. - Facultative/obligatory
  • FAS - United States Foreign Agricultural Service
  • FCL - Full container load
  • FCS - Foreign Commercial Service
  • FEU - Forty-foot equivalent unit
  • FIDIC - Federation internationale des ingenieurs-conseils (International Federation of Consulting Engineers)
  • FIMBRA - Financial Intermediaries, Managers and Brokers Regulatory Association
  • FLASH - Feeder-LASH
  • fms. - Fathoms (timber)
  • fob - Free on board
  • Frt. - Freight
  • ft - Feet
  • Fth. - Fathom
  • fwd. - Forward
  • FX - Foreign Exchange
  • fairway - Navigable channel.
  • flag - Nationality of a ship or the country where the ship is registered.
  • flotsam - Floating wreckage from a shipwreck.
  • Foreign Branch Office - A sales (or other) office maintained in a foreign country and staffed by direct employees of the exporter.
  • Foreign Freight Forwarder - A corporation carrying on the business of forwarding who is not a shipper or consignee. The foreign freight forwarder receives compensation from the shipper for preparing documents and arranging various transactions related to the international distribution of goods. Also, a brokerage fee may be paid to the "forwarder" from steamship lines if the forwarder performs at least two of the following services: (1) coordination of the movement of the cargo to shipside; (2) preparation and processing of the Ocean Bill of Lading; (3) preparation and processing of dock receipts or delivery orders; (4) preparation and processing of consular documents or export declarations; (5) payment of the ocean freight charges on shipments.
  • Foreign Sales Agent - An agent residing in a foreign country who acts as a salesman for a domestic manufacturer.
  • Foreign Trade Zone Entry - A form declaring goods which are brought duty-free into a Foreign Trade Zone for further processing or storage and subsequent exportation and/or consumption.
  • Foreign Trade Zone - This is also referred to as a "free zone", ''free port'' or ''bonded warehouse.-- This is an area within a country where goods can be imported, stored, and/or processed without being subject to customs duties and taxes.
  • Free Alongside (F.A.S.) (or free alongside steamer) - The seller must deliver the goods to a pier and place them within reach of the ship's loading equipment. The buyer arranges ship space and informs the seller when and where the goods are to be placed.
  • Free In And Out (F.I.O.) - Cost of loading and unloading a vessel is borne by the charterer.
  • Free List - A list of goods that have been designated as free from import duties or import port licensing requirements in a given country .
  • Free Of Capture And Seizure (F.C. & S.) - An insurance clause providing that loss is not insured if due to capture, seizure, confiscation and like actions, whether legal or not, or from such acts as piracy, civil war, rebellion and civil strife.
  • Free Of Particular Average (F.P.A.) - A marine insurance clause providing that partial loss or damage is not insured. American condition (F.P.A.A.C.) -- Partial loss not insured unless caused by the vessel being sunk, stranded, burned, on fire, or in collision. English conditions (F.P.A.E.C.) -- Partial loss not insured unless a result of the vessel being sunk, stranded, burned, on fire, or in collision.
  • Free Out (F.O.) - Cost of unloading a vessel is borne by the charterer.
  • free port - Separate area within a port where goods which have been imported may be held without duty payment.
  • free pratique - See pratique.
  • Free Trade Area (FTA) - A group of two or more countries that have eliminated tariff barriers among themselves while not applying a uniform external tariff on imports ports from non-participating countries. The European Free Trade Association is the best known example of such an arrangement.
  • Free Trade Zone - An area to which goods may be imported for processing and subsequent export on duty-free basis.
  • freight - Used as a term or cargo.
  • Freight Forwarder - An agent whose functions are to help expedite shipments by preparing the necessary documents and making other arrangements for the movement of merchandise.
 
 
 
 
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