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Business gateway - Business terms
Category: Business and Law > Business
Date & country: 21/01/2010, UK
Words: 759

Export preferences
Preferential rates of duty charged on certain goods exported from the UK, in effect allowing the buyer to benefit from a lower or zero rate of customs duty. To be eligible, your goods must satisfy a number of rules.

Export reception list (ERL)
A sequentially numbered computer produced list containing specified details of all export consignments which have been received and for which details have been recorded on the computer since the production of the previous list.

Export refund
A payment made to exporters under Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) provisions on the export to non-European Union (EU) countries of certain goods originating in the EU, or in free circulation, where EU prices are above world prices.

Export shop
An excise warehouse approved for the supply of excise goods to entitled passengers without payment of excise duty.

Export time out
A period of time agreed with customs locally, after which, if there has been no customs intervention, goods may be loaded for export.

Exported tobacco products
Tobacco products which are manufactured in the UK and are exported to another European Union (EU) member state or to a third country, either directly or indirectly.

For Customs purposes this is considered to be the person on whose behalf the export declaration is made and who is the owner of the goods, or has a similar right of disposal over them at the time the declaration is accepted. Where the ownership, or a similar right of disposal over the goods, belongs to a person established outside the European Unio...

Express terms
Terms actually stated in the contract either verbally before or at the time the agreement is made or in writing as part of the contract documentation.

A supplementary licence or certificate issued by a competent authority for part of the quantity authorised by an existing licence or certificate.

A restricted-access website, accessible to selected external partners (such as trading partners) for exchanging data and applications and sharing specific business information. The users of the extranet are a well defined group and access should be protected by rigorous security features.

A means of raising working capital against trade debtors.

Family Management Buy-out (FAMBO)
Where family members buy out your shareholding in the business.

The status of an entry after which no further amendment can be made.

Financial Services Authority (FSA)
Independent body that regulates the financial services sector in the UK, including banks, building societies, insurance companies and financial advisers.

A hardware or software security device that blocks unwanted data and traffic to a computer network based on set security guidelines. It controls access to the Internet by internal users and prevents outside parties gaining access to systems and information on the internal network.

Based on the IEEE 1394 standard for connecting high-speed external devices to a computer, such as video and audio-editing devices. It is a complementary technology to Universal Serial Bus, but with a higher bandwidth.

A permanently fixed piece of furniture or equipment incorporated into a property. Removing it would cause damage to buildings or land, and is therefore regarded as legally part of it.

A software product that allows users to produce websites with high quality animation, graphics and interactivity. Most browsers support Flash but a Flash plug-in can be downloaded free of charge.

Floating charge
A form of security for a debt. Instead of naming a specific property, which can be taken by the creditor if the debtor defaults, as in a fixed charge like a mortgage, a class of goods or assets is named, such as the debtor's stock. This allows the debtor to trade in the assets freely. But if the debtor fails to make repayments, then the floating ch...

Foreign currency accounts
It may be more convenient for you to set up foreign currency bank accounts if you frequently issue foreign currency invoices. In particular, a euro bank account gives you flexibility in trading with businesses in eurozone countries.

Foreign exchange risk
You're particularly at risk if you hold or receive a foreign currency which is volatile or very weak. Some currencies present extra difficulties - for example, there may be exchange controls requiring government approval before you can exchange a particular currency.

Forward foreign exchange contract
Exporters can hedge against the risk of adverse exchange rate movements by using a forward foreign exchange contract. You agree to sell the bank a particular foreign currency at a fixed future date for a price that is set now.

Forwarding agent
A person or company who is a specialist in customs procedures and the international carriage of goods, and acts on behalf of importers and exporters.

Commercial agreements allowing one business to deal in a system or product controlled by another, eg most car manufacturers give franchises to sell their cars to local garages who then operate using the manufacturer's name and corporate brands.

Free alongside ship (FAS)
An Incoterm, where the seller clears the goods for export. Delivery takes place when the goods are placed alongside the relevant ship at a named port. From this point the buyer bears all costs and risks.

Free carrier (FCA)
An Incoterm, where the seller is responsible for clearing the goods for export and delivering them to a specified place. This could be the seller's premises or those of a carrier or freight forwarder. The place of delivery determines who is responsible for loading or unloading the goods. Once the goods are delivered the buyer bears all costs and ri...

Free circulation
Goods of wholly Customs Union origin (including component parts), or goods imported into the Union on which all the import formalities have been completed, and all the duty due has been paid and not repaid in whole or part.

Free in and out (FIO)
The freight rate covers the sea freight only. The costs of loading and discharging the cargo are not included.

Free on board (FOB)
An Incoterm, where the seller clears the goods for export and delivers when the goods are passed over the ship's rail at the specified port. From this point on the buyer bears all costs and risks.

Free trade zone
Port or area designated by a country's government for duty-free entry of non-prohibited goods.

Free zone
A designated and approved area where imported goods may be stored without payment of VAT or import duty.

Free zone goods
Goods within the designated free zone area which have met the necessary requirements to gain free zone status.

Free zone manager
The company authorised in the designation order as the responsible authority for controlling the free zone.

Outright ownership of a property. This type of tenure contrasts with leasehold where the leaseholder has the rights to occupy a property for a specified period of time.

Freight forwarder
An intermediary who arranges for the carriage of goods and/or associated services on behalf of a shipper, importer or exporter.

Any place where goods are still to be notified formally to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) by placing them under a nominated customs procedure.

Frustration of contract
Where a contract cannot be performed or completed because of circumstances outside of the control of the parties. This could be a natural event such as a fire that destroys the goods or a change in the law that makes the performance of the contract illegal. For example a contract for the hire of pistols to a gun club would have been frustrated by t...

Funded unapproved retirement benefits scheme -Unapproved pension schemes aimed at owner-managers. Schemes carry few restrictions on the level of contributions or benefits that can be received. Employers normally receive tax relief on contributions to these schemes but employee's contributions do not receive tax relief.

General Valuation Statement (GVS)
Form used as a 'season ticket' in place of individual valuation declarations.

Going concern
Accounting concept that states a business should be valued on the basis that it will be continuing in business and able to use its assets for their intended purpose. The alternative would be a break-up basis which sets values according to what the assets could be sold for immediately - this is often much less than their value would be if they were ...

Before deduction of tax or discount. Net is after tax or discount.

Gross domestic product (GDP)
The value of the goods and services produced by a national economy over a particular period.

Gross premium
A term normally applied to gross written insurance premiums before deduction of brokerage fees or commission and expenses.

Gross profit
The value of invoiced sales - whether or not the money has been received - minus the direct costs of production. The costs are what you have used, not what you have bought. Gross profit is sometimes expressed as per cent on sales.

Underground water resources, eg aquifers.

Group of 7-8 (G7-8)
The world's largest trading countries. The members of the G7/8 are Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, UK and United States.

Group payment arrangement (GPA)
Arrangement made with HM Revenue & Customs to pay the total amount of corporation tax owed by a group of companies without having to calculate the amount owed by the individual companies within the group.

This allows exporters of small consignments to gain the benefits of containerisation. A freight forwarder undertakes to group together different exporters' consignments to fill a whole container for a particular destination.

Secondary agreement by which one person promises to honour the debt of another person if that debtor fails to pay. The directors of small companies are often called on by creditors to give their personal guarantees for company debts. A guarantee must be in writing and the guarantor can only be sued if the actual debtor can't pay, in contrast to ind...

The financial security required for some warehouse premises, some customs procedures and all movements of duty-suspended excise goods from an excise warehouse. Administered by the Financial Securities Centre (FSC).

Guarantee company
A company which has no share capital but the members have agreed, by way of guarantee, to pay a specified sum if the company is wound up. Commonly used for non-trading companies such as charities.

Guaranteeing associations
Organisations that are approved by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to issue Transports Internationaux Routiers (TIR) Carnets.

Hard disk
A disk that is the main storage unit of a computer and is used to store its permanent memory even when the computer itself is switched off.

Can range from minor harm, eg small cuts or bruises, to serious harm, eg loss of a limb, asthma, mental health, hearing loss, death.

Harmonised system (HS)
An international system of classifying and describing goods. The HS is managed by the World Customs Organisation (WCO). In the European Union it is embodied in the Tariff.

Harmonised system committee (HSC)
The committee of the World Customs Organisation (WCO) responsible for managing the harmonised system (HS).

Anything that has the potential to cause harm to people, eg chemicals, electricity, working with ladders.

Hazardous substances
Substances used directly in, or generated from work activities, eg adhesives, paints, cleaning agents, grain dust, and biological agents.

Hazardous waste
Waste that has hazardous properties that may render it harmful to human health or the environment, eg batteries, oils and oil filters, paint and ink, chemical waste, solvents. The term special waste is used in Scotland but has the same meaning.

Health & Safety Executive (HSE)
HSE is the enforcement and advisory body to the HSC. It is responsible for providing information and advice, conducting inspections and enforcing health and safety law. The HSE also conducts research, and drafts new and revised legislation and approved codes of practice.

Health and Safety Commission (HSC)
The HSC is responsible for providing information and advice sponsoring and conducting research and submitting proposals for new and revised legislation.

High risk CAP goods
Goods subject to special Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) controls that are considered to be of high revenue risk. Such goods must only be moved in sealed containers/vehicles under bond.

High Value Dealers (HVD)
High Value Dealers are businesses that deal in goods and accept (or are prepared to accept) the equivalent of €15,000 or more (approximately £10,000) in cash for any single transaction. Governed by the Money Laundering Regulations.

Hire purchase
A contract to hire goods for a specified period and at a fixed cost. If you pay all the instalments over the agreed period, the goods become your property. However, you may return the goods during the specified period, and not be held responsible for paying any future instalments.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
UK government department with responsibility for collecting VAT and other taxes and Customs duties. It's also charged with trying to stop illegal imports of drugs, alcohol and tobacco smuggling and preventing VAT and duties fraud.

Holdover Tenancy
A tenancy that arises when someone remains in possession of a property after the expiration of the previous tenancy and is recognised by the landlord by accepting rent.

Home use removal-delivery
Removal from registered premises or an excise warehouse for duty paid consumption in the UK.

A computer that houses, serves and maintains files for a website. A critical element in any hosting solution is a fast connection to the Internet.

Hostile applet
An applet that can be embedded in any HTML file such as a web page, and which is designed to be malicious or cause damage when it is downloaded onto an IT system.

Any location where Wi-Fi network access (usually Internet access) is made publicly available. Hotspots can often be found in airports, hotels, coffee shops, and other places where business-people tend to congregate. They enable a user with a laptop equipped for Wi-Fi to contact a local hotspot and get connected through its network to reach the Inte...

House Air Waybill (HAWB)
A forwarding agents bill of landing, that forms part of a consolidation.

The central point of a network where circuits are connected, with data arriving from one or more directions then being forwarded out in one or more directions. Network hubs act as junction boxes, permitting new computers to be connected to the network as easily as plugging a power cord into an electrical socket.

A link on which a user can click in order to access related information on the same webpage, different pages within the same website, or to a different site altogether, making navigation much easier. The hyperlink is normally indicated by underlined or coloured text.

Hypertext mark-up language (HTML)
The authoring software language used on the Internet for the creation of webpages. It uses a set of markup symbols or codes that tell the web browser how to display a webpage's words and images for the user. Each individual markup code is commonly referred to as a tag.

Hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP)
HTTP is the standard way of transferring information across the Internet and the world wide web. It supports a variety of different media and file formats, across a variety of platforms, and is invisible to the user.

Implied terms
Terms and clauses which are implied into a contract by law or by custom and practice without actually being mentioned by any party. Terms implied by custom and practice can always be overridden by express terms but some terms implied by law cannot be overridden - particularly those relating to consumers.

Import duty
Taxes HM Revenue & Customs charge on goods imported into the European Union. These include Customs duty, Common Agricultural Policy Charges, and Anti-Dumping Duty.

Import licence
Some countries may require import licences for certain or all goods. As an exporter it's normally your customer's responsibility to comply with import procedures, but it's a good idea to check they're doing so.

Import paperwork
Goods in free circulation within the European Union (EU) generally require minimal documentation. But if your imports exceed £260,000 you must provide Intrastat declarations to HM Revenue & Customs for statistical purposes. Some goods need special documentation. Goods imported from outside the EU require a range of import documentation, usually inc...

Import VAT
The VAT chargeable on imported goods. VAT is also charged on any other taxes or duties due on the goods.

Import VAT certificate
Official evidence of VAT paid on imported goods before recovering the VAT as input tax. The normal evidence is the monthly certificate, known as form C79.

Importation of goods
The entry of goods from a place (or places) outside the European Union territory.

Imported goods
Goods imported from outside the European Union and not in free circulation.

Imported services
Services received from outside the UK.

Imported tobacco products
Tobacco products which originate outside the UK and enter the UK from either another European Union member state or a third country.

Any owner or other person possessing or having an interest in the goods between the time of importation and when they are released into free circulation.

Improvement notices
Improvement notices are served by a health and safety inspector if a law has been broken and the infringement is serious enough to warrant it.

Inception date
The date from which, under the terms of a policy, an insurer is deemed to be at risk.

Income and expenditure statement
A schedule of all income received and payments made during a past or forecasted period.

In company law means the legal act of creating a company. This differs from the contract law definition, which means inclusion in or adoption of some term or condition as part of the contract.

Insurance principle by which a policyholder is placed in the same financial position after a loss, as they were immediately before it.

A deed or other document to which two or more parties are bound.

Indirect export
Refers to goods declared in the UK leaving the European Union via another member state.

Indirect representation
A third party who makes a Customs declaration in their own name, but on behalf of a trader.

The term for general price increases.

Method of exchanging information between enabled devices such as mobile phones and personal digital assistants (PDAs) without the need for cables.

A remedy sometimes awarded by the court that stops some action being taken. It can be used to stop another party doing something against the terms of a contract. Injunctions are at the court's discretion and a judge may refuse to give one and award damages instead.

Inland clearance depot (ICD)
A place approved by HM Revenue & Customs to which goods imported in containers/vehicles may be removed for entry, examination and clearance, and at which goods intended for export in container/vehicles may be made available for export control.

When a business cannot pay its outstanding debts, or when the value of its assets is less than the value of its debts. Insolvency can lead to the bankruptcy of individuals such as sole traders, or the winding up of a business if it is not addressed.

Inspection certificate
Sometimes required by the importer's country to confirm that the shipped goods meet its national specifications.