The following is an alphabetical collection of terms and acronyms for various words and phrases found throughout the site. Click on a letter below to go to the corresponding place in the alphabet.

A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z

The following is an alphabetical collection of terms and acronyms for various words and phrases found throughout the site.


.NET Web Service

A vendor specific technology allowing computers to access applications designed for the Internet.


Shipper's Export Declaration (SED)

A:1 - Country Group A

The former COCOM countries.

A:2 - Country Group A

The Missile Technology Control Regime

A:3 - Country Group A

The Australia Group.

A:4 - Country Group A

The Nuclear Suppliers Group

Accelerated Commercial Release Operations System (ACROSS)

The Accelerated Commercial Release Operations System (ACROSS) uses advanced electronic technology to streamline the way goods are imported into Canada. Further enhancements to ACROSS introduced the capabilities of allowing EDI Clients the benefits of transmitting release information that has OGD (Other Government Departments) requirements.

Accelerated Commercial Release Operations System (ACROSS)

Under ACROSS, importers and brokers electronically exchange information with the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA).


See Accelerated Commercial Release Operations System


Anti-dumping duty

Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS)

A civil penalty regime that imposes monetary penalties to secure compliance with Canadian Customs legislation.

Administrative Sanctions

For violations of the Export Administration Act, the Department of Commerce may deny export privileges; impose significant fines for each violation; seize commodities/technical data; and/or other severe penalties.

Administrator (system security level)

The holder of administrator security level allows the broadest access rights of all three user levels to add, edit or delete data and other user's records as well as both local and system wide system configuration settings.

admission temporaire

See Carnet or ATA Carnet

Advanced Technology Products

About 500 of some 22,000 commodity classification codes used in reporting U.S. merchandise trade are identified as "advanced technology" codes.


Arms Export Control Act

AES Direct

An internet based system for filing Shipper's Export Declaration information to the Automated Export System (AES).

Agency Fee - Transportation Charge

Charge payable to a port agent by a ship-owner or operator.

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)

Regulatory agency responsible for regulations and documentation requirements related to the import or export of plants and animals into and out of the United States.

Anti-dumping duty (ADD)

When products are sold abroad below the price the products are sold in the exporter's domestic market other countries may impose a levy against the goods when imported.


See Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

Application Programming Interface (API)

A set of programming routines to interact with the application, access its lower-level services and make direct requests without the use of its standard interface.

Arms Embargo Chart

See United States Arms Embargo Chart

Assessing Penalties

Parties who violate the Export Administration Act may be denied export privileges, fined and/or taken to prison.


International Import Certificate

Australia Group Countries (AG) / Country Group A:3

This group was formed in 1984 to control the spread of chemical and biological weapons through licensing measures for exports in certain chemicals, biological agents, chemical and biological manufacturing facilities and equipment. Today, its member countries comprise of Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea (South), Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the United States.

Automated Broker Interface (ABI)

U.S. Customs permits certain importers - including brokers, carriers, port authorities, service centers, law firms and surety companies - to file mandatory information via a certified ABI process. Currently, close to 100% of entries are filed with Customs through ABI even though the program is on a strictly volunteer basis.

Automated Export System (AES)

Electronic method to file the Shipper's Export Declaration (SED) and the ocean manifest information directly to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Automated Export System (AES) Submission

An AES Submission is a filing of a Shipper's Export Declaration using the Automated Export System.



B13 Declaration Form

The majority of goods leaving Canada must be reported to Revenue Canada Customs and Excise using the "B13."

Batch processing

Running data records - grouped together - through the application without a user needing to be present.

Bill of Lading

Document issued by a carrier for goods to be delivered that describes the conditions under which the goods are accepted by the carrier and details that type and quantity of goods, name of vessel (if appropriate), identifying marks and numbers, destination, etc.


See Bureau of Industry and Security

Brussels Tariff Nomenclature (BTN)

An international tariff classification system that was renamed the 'Customs Cooperation Council Nomenclature' (CCCN) and which in turn became the Harmonized System (HS).


See Bunker Surcharge


Brussels Tariff Nomenclature

Bunker Surcharge (BSC) - Transportation Charge

Surcharge by the carrier to cover temporary higher fuel costs.

Bureau of Export Administration (BXA)

Bureau of Export Administration (now called "Bureau of Industry and Security")

Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS)

Formerly the Bureau of Export Administration, the Bureau of Industry and Security was responsible for developing the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).


See Bureau of Export Administration


International Import Certificate


See Statement By Ultimate Consignee and Purchaser




See Customs Automated Data Exchange


See Canadian Automated Export Declaration

Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)

The CBSA's role is to manage the nation's borders by administering and enforcing about domestic Canadian laws that govern trade and travel, as well as international agreements and conventions.

Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (CCRA)

Now Canadian Revenue Agency. The customs program is part of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

Canada Customs Invoice

Certain commercial shipments to Canada over a specific fixed dollar amount must be accompanied by a Canada Customs Invoice and are subject to duties and sales taxes.

Canadian Automated Export Declaration (CAED)

Through the Canadian Automated Export Declaration registered exporters and agents can report goods electronically to the Federal Government of Canada.

Canadian Exemptions

Export without a license of unclassified defense article or any unclassified technical data to Canada for end-use in Canada or return to the United States may be permitted in certain instances.

Carnet or ATA Carnet (admission temporaire)

A document for customs that permits sending merchandise temporarily into certain foreign countries without paying duty. The goods must return to the country of origin in order to avoid penalties.


See Canada Border Services Agency


See Commodity Classification Automated Tracking System


See CoCom Cooperation Forum


See Commerce Control List


See Canada Customs and Revenue Agency

Certificate of Inspection

The certificate is a document that states the condition of merchandise prior to being shipped.

Certificate of Insurance

The certificate is a document stating that the specified producer's goods are insured.

Certificate of Manufacture

The certificate is a document stating where producer manufactured the goods being shipped and that manufacturing is complete.

Certificate of Origin (COO)

The certificate is a document indicating where the shipped good, or the majority of its content, was produced.

Certificate of Weight

The certificate is an official document stating the weight of the goods.


See Commercial Invoice


See Cost, Insurance and Freight


Cost, Insurance, Freight and Duty

Civil End Users (CIV) - License Exception

For national security reasons only, controlled items for export and reexport to a given destination can be allowed provided they are destined to civil end-users for civil end-uses in Country Group D:1.

Client-server version

System architecture is divided between workstations - providing the interface for making requests - and the computer supplying (serving) the application and database.


See Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls

CoCom Cooperation Forum (CCF)

Towards the middle of 1992, in light of the end of the Cold War, COCOM members invited representatives from all Eastern European democracies, the Baltic states and most of the former Soviet republics to form the CoCom Cooperation Forum that aimed to combat the proliferation of sensitive technology.

Column 1 Rates

The U.S. import tariff rates for 'most favored nation' (MFN).

Column 2 Rates

Column 2 rates are substantially higher than column 1 rates and are assessed only on imports from countries not receiving most favored nation treatment.

Commerce Control List (CCL)

This supplement to the Export Administration Regulations provides a listing of items that have export controls placed upon them.

Commerce Country Chart

The Commerce Country Chart helps exporters determine whether a license is required for export of items on the CCL to a given destination.

Commercial Invoice (CI)

A statement of transaction prepared by the seller that includes country of origin, currency, and the shippers and consignees name and address as well as a description of the merchandise, price, and terms. It acts as a bill for the goods and is often used by governments to determine the true value of goods for customs duty assessments.

Commodity Classification Automated Tracking System (CCATS)

U.S. Bureau of Industry and Security code number for products classified against the Commerce Control List.

Compliance Audit Trails

A compliance audit trail is a process prooving that proper procedures ensuring compliance with appropriate regulations were followed.

Composite Theoretical Performance (CTP)

A measurement of computer performance to determine export classification.

Compound Duty

A levy based on the value of the goods as well as the weight, volume or quantity.


Receiver of merchandise from a seller or shipper and who is recognized as the owner of said goods for the purpose of customs duties.

Consular Invoice

This consular certified document describes a shipment of goods and is used by the country's customs official to verify the value, quantity, and nature of the shipment.

Consumption Tax

See Excise Tax

Controlled Goods

Certain items have restrictions imposed on their trade by a number of rules, regulations and legislation.

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora banning commercial international trade of endangered species and monitoring trade in others that might become endangered.

Cooperating Countries

Similar to the former COCOM, its member nations include Austria, Finland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Republic of Korea (South), New Zealand, Sweden, and Switzerland.

Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls (COCOM)

This now defunct 17-nation was concerned with multilateral export controls and was replaced in 1994 by the Wassenaar Arrangement.

Core system

The base of the application containing the most broadly useful and universal system functions, which is then scaled and enhanced by a series of modules to form a complete, proprietary-like system

Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF) - INCOTERM

A shipping term whereby the seller agrees to take full responsibility for delivering the goods to the port of loading, clear the goods for export, and arrange and pay for transportation and marine insurance over the goods to the named port of discharge.

Countervailing Duties (CVD)

A levy imposed by a national government against specific products to offset subsidies provided to another country's domestic producers.

Country Chart

BIS maintains the Commerce Country Chart that contains licensing requirements based on destination and Reason for Control.

Country Group A

The countries listed under Country Group A maintain multilateral export control relationships with the United States

Country Group B

Country Group B lists the "free-world" countries.

Country Group D

Exports for countries listed in Country Group D are controlled for various national security and non-proliferation reasons.

Country Group E

Countries listed in Country Group E are those for which exports are controlled under an embargo.

Country Groups

The U.S. Department of Commerce organizes countries into four country designations 'A', 'B', 'D', and 'E' for export control purposes.

Country of Origin

Refers to the country where a product was manufactured.

Country of Ultimate Destination

The country designated as the country of ultimate destination on an application for an export license, or on a shipper's export declaration where an exemption is claimed under the ITAR, must be the country of ultimate end use.

Criminal Sanctions

Criminal sanctions, including fines of $50,000 or more and/or jail terms up to 10 years, may be imposed for knowing or willful violations of Export Administration Act.


Composite Theoretical Performance

Customs Administration

A government agency that regulates the flow of imports and exports as well as collecting duties levied upon the goods involved.

Customs Area

A jurisdiction where a particular tariff schedule is applied on goods entering or leaving the area.

Customs Audits

A Customs audit is the process of ensuring a business is in compliance with Customs legislation through a thorough examination of relevant business account information and other records.

Customs Automated Data Exchange (CADEX)

CADEX is and Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) system offered by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) that allows importers and brokers to file their B3 forms electronically.

Customs Broker

A company or individual that handles Customs entries for an importer.

Customs Duties

Levies charged on most imported and some exported goods.

Customs Invoice

A document that contains a seller's declaration detailing the price and costs (insurance, freight etc.) associated with an imported good.

Customs Service

See Customs Administration


See Countervailing Duties



D:1 - Country Group D

Countries listed under Country Group D:1 are of national security concern.

D:2 - Country Group D

Countries listed under Country Group D:2 are of nuclear proliferation concern.

D:3 - Country Group D

Countries listed under Country Group D:3 are of chemical and biological warfare concern.

D:4 - Country Group D

Countries listed under Country Group D:4 are of missile technology concern.

Dangerous Goods Form

The Dangerous Goods Form is a declaration that a shipment contains articles that are a potential danger.

Data encryption

A process that alters or scrambles data with a specific algorithmic code so that it is unreadable without a corresponding decrypting 'key' - essentially using knowledge of the same algorithmic code to reverse the encryption process and return the data to its original form.


See Delivery Duty Paid


See Directorate of Defense Trade Controls


Directorate of Defense Trade Controls

Debarred Parties List

This list from the Department of State, Office of Defense Trade Controls, identifies parties whose export privileges are denied under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

Deemed Export

An export of technology or source code (except encryption source code) is "deemed" to take place when it is released to a foreign national within the United States.

Defense Article

Any item designated in the United States Munitions List is considered a Defense Article including models, mockups or anything that reveals technical data related to designated items.

Defense Articles and Services

An article or service that has a military application associated with it is designated a defense article or defense service and is subject to State Department controls.

Defense Service

Assistance, such as training towards production, design, operation or repair of defense articles, is considered a defense service and is controlled whether or not the service is performed in the United States or abroad.

Delimited file

A data file with individual record fields divided by spaces/tabs or symbols (i.e. commas, vertical pipes etc.) and commonly used for batch input of information from one system/database to another.

Delivery Duty Paid (DDP) - INCOTERM

A shipping term whereby the shipper/exporter/seller is responsible for all shipping and clearance through Customs.

Denial, Revocation, Suspension or Amendment of Licenses and Other Approvals

An application under ITAR for an export license may not be approved, and any license, approval or exemption that has been granted may be revoked, suspended, or amended without prior notice.

Denied Parties

Refers to individuals and entities that are denied export privileges by the U.S. Government and subject to economic sanctions programmes.

Denied Persons

See Denied Parties

Denied Persons List

This list from the Bureau of Industry and Security, identifies individuals and entities whose export privileges have been denied.

Denied Persons/Party Screening (DPS)

A system for screening all customers to ensure that transactions involving U.S.-origin items covered by export regulations do not involve persons or entities whose export privileges have been denied by the U.S. and other governments or supranational agencies.

Department of Commerce Office of Export Enforcement

The Department of Commerce Office of Export Enforcement is composed of the Office of Intelligence in Washington, D.C. and Office of Investigation, also headquartered in Washington D.C., with field offices around the country.

Destination Control Statement (EAR 758.6)

The use of a Destination Control Statement fulfills a U.S. exporter's obligation under the Export Administration Regulations to inform an importer that the shipment is subject to U.S. export controls. The Statement should be entered clearly on the shipment's Bill(s) of Lading and Commercial Invoice(s).

Destination Delivery Charge (DDC) - Transportation Charge

Charges at destination port for unloading.

Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC)

The objective of the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls is to advance national strategic objectives and U.S. foreign policy goals through timely enforcement of defense trade controls and the formulation of defense trade policy.


The illegal transfer to unauthorized entities or destinations of controlled commodities.


Department of Commerce


Refers to the documents required in global trade.


Department of Defense


Department of Energy


Department of State


Denied Persons List


See Denied Persons/Party Screening


A means by which a U.S. importer can claim a refund on duty paid for imported products that are then re-exported.


Application for Amendment to License for Export or Import of Classified or Unclassified Defense Articles and Related Technical Data


Application-License For Permanent Export of Unclassified Defense Articles and Related Technical Data


International Import Certificate


Application-License For Temporary Export of Unclassified Defense Articles


Non-Transfer and Use Certificate


Application-License For Permanent-Temporary Export or Temporary Import of Classified Defense Articles And Related Classified Technical Data


Statement of Registration (Application)


Authority to Export Defense Articles and Defense Services Sold Under The Foreign Military Sales Program.


Defense Trade Controls

Dual Use

Dual use covers particular items subject to the Export Administration Regulations that can be used both in sensitive military or nuclear and other applications that are not also subject to the controls of the Department of State or the Department of Energy or the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.


See Tariff

Duty Drawback

See Drawback


Delivery Verification



E:1 - Country Group E

Countries under a United Nations embargo.

E:2 - Country Group E

Countries under a unilateral U.S. embargo.


Export Administration Act


Export Administration Regulations


European Community


See Export Control Classification Numbers


See Electronic Data Interchange


Entity List

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

EDI provides computer-to-computer exchange of business documents between different computers using standard communications protocols and formats.

Electronic License Entry (ELLIE)

The Office of Defense Trade Controls' system for on-line submission of export license applications.


See Electronic License Entry


An embargo is a restriction on exports or imports with respect to the specific goods or ultimate destination of the shipment.

Emergency Applications

In the event that emergency status is required for an export license application, the emergency request will be determined and submitted to the U.S. Department of Commerce.


Export Management System


See Encryption Commodities and Software

Encryption Commodities and Software (ENC) - License Exception

The Encryption Commodities and Software license exception authorizes exports and reexports of encryption commodities and software to all destinations except Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Sudan and Syria.


A person or entity who receives U.S.-origin commodities and uses them or incorporates them into other commodities.

End-User Statement (Form BXA-711)

A statement completed by the purchaser and ultimate consignee that indicates the complete name and address of the ultimate consignee, the intended end-use of the commodities provided, the nature of the ultimate consignee's business and business relationship with the exporter.

Enhanced Proliferation Control Initiative (EPCI)

Where a good being exported is destined for use in missile production or related activity, an Individual Validated License is required prior to shipment.

Enterprise resource planning (ERP)

An information system that integrates an enterprise's related applications to manage resources and integrate whole processes across the entire enterprise.

Entity List

Document by the Bureau of Industry and Security that prohibits exports to specific entities without first obtaining an export license.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

The Environmental Protection Agency is a U.S. Government agency that leads the nation's environmental science, research, education and assessment efforts.


See Environmental Protection Agency

EPA Documents

The Environmental Protection Agency requires documentation for trade in certain items such as automobiles.


See Enhanced Proliferation Control Initiative


Enhanced Proliferation Control Initiative

European Community (EC)

Now known as the European Union, its members included Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

European Union (EU)

Formerly called the European Community (EC), the organization became the European Union in January, 1994.

European Zone Charge (EZC) - Transportation Charge

The European Zone Charge is a charge in Europe for inland haulage transport.


Term recognizing that the price quoted is applicable only at the point of origin. The seller agrees to place the goods under the care of the buyer at a specified time and place or within a fixed period.

Excise Tax

Excise tax is generally placed on particular products such as tobacco, liquor and perfume.

Expert and integration modules

A series of stand-alone applications used in combination with the core system, and in tandem with other modules, to provide intelligence and business specific functionality to the overall application.


A domestic good or service that is sold, shipped or transferred abroad.

Export Administration Act (EAA)

The Export Administration Act authorizes the president to control exports of U.S. goods and technology to all foreign destinations for reasons of national security, foreign policy or short supply and must be reauthorized usually every three years.

Export Administration Policy

The objective of this function is to analyze licensing issues, determine and implement the proper strategy, keep informed of U.S. export control policies, and prepare comprehensive license applications in a timely manner.

Export Administration Regulations (EAR)

The Export Administration Regulations issued by the Bureau of Industry and Security serve the national security, foreign policy, non-proliferation and short supply interests of the United States by placing control provisions on all exports.

Export Classification

Determination of the correct export classification number, based on the laws and regulations of the country of export.

Export Compliance

Applied regulations on all goods exported from a country including correct documentation, classification, licensing and screening (denied party/persons screening etc.).

Export Control Classification Numbers (ECCN)

An Export Control Classification Number is a numeric designator assigned to goods by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS). Each ECCN consists of five identifiers for category, product group, type of control, and country group level of control.

Export Duty

A tax imposed on exports.

Export License

Allows movement of commodities from the U.S. to a non-U.S. destination and is required whenever a shipment cannot be made under a License Exception.

Export license and permit management

Storing and organization of a company's export licenses by an application.

Export Licensing Procedures (Department of State)

Exporters of defense article must obtain a license from the Office of Defense Trade Controls prior to the export unless the export qualifies for an exemption under the provisions of the ITAR.

Export Management Policy

The Export Management Policy conveys the commitment by upper management to regulatory compliance.

Export Management System (EMS)

An Export Management System (EMS) is an optional program a company can establish to ensure that their exports decisions and transactions are consistent with Government Export Regulations.

Export Quota

See Quota for general definition.

Export Recordkeeping Policy

A program for recordkeeping as to ensure that both administrative and transaction records are maintained in accordance with any Export Administration Regulations.

Export Regulations

Export regulations are the rules governing shipments from a different country including required documents and procedures, quotas to be adhered to, and/or restrictions on the shipment of certain items or to certain places/people.

Export Training Policy

An Export Training Policy ensures that all employees involved in export-related activities receive on-going training and education.


See Ex Works


See European Zone Charge




See U.S. Federal Register (F.R.) Rules and Notices


Foreign Assets Control Regulations


See Free Carrier


See Federal Communications Commission


See Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

FDA Approval

See Food and Drug Administration Approval

Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

The Federal Communications Commission is an independent U.S. government agency, directly responsible to Congress, and regulates interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite and cable.

File Transfer Protocol (FTP)

A commonly used method by which to transfer files from one computer to another across a network or the Internet.


Foreign Military Sales


See Free on Board

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Approval

Some products, such as food and pharmaceuticals, are subject to approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)

The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act prohibits corrupt payments to foreign officials for the purpose of obtaining or keeping business.

Foreign Person

Generally, any natural person who is not a lawful permanent resident of the United States or not a corporation, association, partnership, trust, society or other entity or group incorporated or organized in the United States.

Foreign Policy Controls

Foreign policy controls are imposed to further U.S. foreign policy and expire annually, unless extended.

Foreign Trade Statistical Program

Information on U.S. exports of merchandise from the U.S. to all countries, except Canada, is compiled from copies of Shipper's Export Declarations (SEDs) and SED data from qualified exporters, forwarders, or carriers.

Free Carrier (FCA) - INCOTERM

Replaces the former term "FOB named inland port" to designate the seller's responsibility for the cost of loading goods at the named shipping point.

Free on Board (FOB) - INCOTERM

A shipping term whereby the seller fulfils its obligation to deliver when the goods have passed over the ship's rail at the named port of shipment.

Freight Forwarder

A business that arranges, handles and consolidates customers' exports for compensation.


Foreign Trade Statistics Regulations

Fuel Surcharge

See Bunker Surcharge



G7 Countries (The "Group of Seven")

The G7 comprises of the seven major industrialized democracies: Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom and the United States.

G8 Countries

The G8 comprises of the seven major industrialized democracies: Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, United Kingdom, United States plus Russia.

General Technology Note

The export of "technology" that is "required" for the "development", "production", or "use" of items on the Commerce Control List is controlled according to the provisions in each Category.

Generalized System of Preferences (GSP)

Under the Generalized System of Preferences industrialized countries give preferential treatment to manufactured goods imported goods from certain developing countries.

Global Trade Solution

A Global Trade Solution helps companies manage complex import and export issues such as regulatory compliance.

Group B Shipment (GBS) - License Exception

For national security reasons only, controlled commodities for export and reexport to a given destination are authorized provided they are destined for a country listed under Country Group B.


See United States General Services Administration

Guest (system security level)

The guest security level has the least amount of access rights - usually limited to viewing publicly available data.



Harmonization Code System (HS Code)

A Harmonization Code is a numeric identifier for a specific trade commodity.

Harmonized Code

A uniform description system used internationally for classifying goods.

Harmonized System (HS)

The Harmonized System was formerly known as the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System and is an international product classification system comprising of approximately 5,000 article descriptions and a corresponding coding system

Harmonized System (HS) Classification

The Harmonized System (HS) classification is maintained by the World Customs Organization (WCO) to classify trade commodities.

Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS)

The HTS is a global classification system that provides the applicable tariff rates and statistical categories to describe most traded goods.

Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS)

The HTSUS listing of goods and rates is used by the U.S. Customs Service and is based on the international Harmonized System Convention.

Headquarters Rulings

Customs' classifications and valuations of imported goods are processed at two places - the Washington D.C. "Headquarters" and the U.S. Customs Office at the Port of New York ("N.Y. and Port").

Homeland Security

An independent United States Government agency established by the President in 2001 to implement the national strategy to counter terrorist threats to the United States.

Homeland Security (U.S.)

United States' Homeland Security initiatives include border and transportation security, protection of critical infrastructure, monitoring chemical and biological threats, helping first responders (fire, police, EMS etc.) and the USA PATRIOT Act.


See Harmonized System

HS Classification

See Harmonized System classification

HS Code

See Harmonization Code System


See Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States

Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML)

Adds the structure to a document that allows a browser to interpret and display or broadcast its text.



IATA Waybills

See International Air Transport Association Waybills


Import Certificate


See International Emergency Economic Powers Act


International Emergency Economic Powers Act


Individual License


International Munitions List

Import Certificate (IC)

A document issued by the importing country's government and may be required in order to apply for a U.S. export license.

Import Classification

Determination of the correct tariff number in a Customs tariff for admissibility and duty purposes.

Import Clearance

The completion of customs entry requirements that results in the release of goods to the importer.

Import Compliance

Applied regulations on all goods imported into a country including correct documentation, marking and labeling.

Import License

An import license is a document that allows for the importation of a given good where import controls exist for that product.

Import Quota

See Quota for general definition.

Imports (ITAR)

No defense article may be imported into the United States unless it was previously exported temporarily under a license issued by the Office of Defense Trade Controls; or it constitutes a properly licensed temporary import or in-transit shipment or qualifies for a relevant temporary import license exemption; or is authorized by the Department of the Treasury.

INCOTERMS (INternational COmmercial TERMS)

Created by the International Chamber of Commerce, INCOTERMS comprise of 13 internationally recognized foreign trade terms dealing with costs, ownership and liability involved in the movement of goods.

Internal Revenue Service Employer ID Number (EIN)

Internal Revenue Service Employer ID Number (EIN)

International Air Transport Association (IATA)

The International Air Transport Association is comprised of member international airlines and promotes regulations for uniform safety and exchange among its members.

International Air Transport Association Waybills

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) presecribes standard formats for a number of documents used in Passenger and Cargo Agency Agreements and Sales Agency Rules, including waybills.

INternational COmmercial TERMS


International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA)

To deal threats to the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) grants the President authority to institute regulations covering commercial and financial transactions with other countries if a national emergency is declared.

International Trade Solution

See Global Trade Solution


Interpol is an international police organization that facilitates cooperation among intelligence agencies around the world.

Inward Cargo Manifest

The Inward Cargo Manifest is the main document used to import merchandise into the United States and contains information about the carrier, exporter, importer and cargo.


Industrial Security Regulations (Replaced by NISP)


International Traffic in Arms Regulations

Item Master

A proprietary inventory list to be used with a global trade system.


Individual Validated License



Jurisdiction of Controls

Jurisdiction of U.S. export controls extends to exports and reexports of U.S.-origin commodities, parts and components and technical data from the United States or from one foreign country to another.



Key Management Infrastructure (KMI) - License Exception

KMI authorizes the export and reexport of certain encryption software and hardware except to Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Syria, and Sudan.



Landed Cost

The cost of an export at its point of entry prior to any additional costs or levies being added such as taxes or business costs such as assembly.

Legal Compliance

U.S. export laws require licenses by the Department of Commerce for certain U.S.-origin goods exported from the United States or reexported from a foreign location.

Letter of Instruction

The letter of instruction informs the freight forwarder how freight is to be transported. It provides the forwarder with information to complete an airway bill or other bill of lading and it authorizes him to sign and complete any required documents. It also provides the forwarder with any special instructions.

License Applications - Defense Articles

Applications for licenses for the export of defense articles and related technical data must be made to the Office of Defense Trade Controls.

license determination

A decision made by the government body with juristiction over trade in a commodity that a license should be granted to those making the request when specific conditions have been met.

License Exception

A License Exception stipulates under what conditions exports or re-exports can proceed without a license.

License Exceptions

Under a License Exception, exports and reexports of qualifying goods or data require no prior written approval of the U.S. Department of Commerce.


Most governments require some commodities to be licensed prior to exportation or importation.

Limited Value Shipment (LVS) - License Exception

This License Exception, for all destinations in Country Group B, allows exports and reexports of eligible commodities with limited value



Maintenance of Records (ITAR - DDTC)

Relevant records concerning the manufacture, acquisition and disposition of defense articles and the provision of defense services by the registrant must be maintained for a period of 6 years.

Manufacturing License Agreement

A manufacturing license agreement represents a contract (written, implied or otherwise) whereby an entity or individual grants another entity or individual an authorization or a license to manufacture articles on their behalf.


The maquiladora program allows foreign manufacturers to ship components into Mexico duty-free for assembly and subsequent reexport.


Militarily Critical Technologies List

Misrepresentation and omission of facts (ITAR)

It is unlawful to use any export or in-transit control document containing a false statement or misrepresenting or omitting a material fact for the purpose of exporting any defense article or technical data or the furnishing of any defense service for which a license or approval is required by the ITAR.

Missile Technology Control Regime Countries (MTCR) (Country Group A:2)

Members countries are Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.


Manufacturing License Agreement


The MOAD system is an n tier client server technology.


Missile Technology Control Regime



N.Y. and Port Rulings

Customs' classifications and valuations of imported goods are processed at two places - Washington D.C. ("Headquarters") and the U.S. Customs Office at the Port of New York ("N.Y. and Port").


North American Free Trade Agreement

NAFTA Certificate of Origin

The NAFTA Certificate of Origin was created to determine whether or not shipments to any of the United States, Mexico or Canada are allowed preferential tariff treatment based on the origin of the goods being shipped.

NAFTA Qualification

NAFTA Rules of Origin

NAFTA rules of origin are designed to ensure that the NAFTA Parties benefit from free trade and prevent non-NAFTA products from receiving NAFTA treatment.


See National Archives and Records Administration

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is an independent Federal agency that oversees the management of all Federal records.


North Atlantic Treaty Organization

NATO Countries (North Atlantic Treaty Organization)

Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Network version

An application resides on the client's server(s) and workstations send requests to the system via the company network or intranet.


National Industrial Security Program (Replaces ISR)

No License Required (NLR) - License Exception

Items listed on the CCL where no license is needed do not require a License Exception.

North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)

NAFTA is a trading bloc with Mexico, Canada and the U.S whereby all tariffs on goods traded among the three countries will eventually be phased out.


See United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission


Multi level technology architecture where core functionality lies between the user and a database.

Nuclear Applications

"Sensitive" nuclear end-use: The design, construction, fabrication, operation or maintenance of a nuclear reactor or power plant, uranium exploration, mining or milling operations, uranium fuel fabrication, particle accelerators and other high energy physics research, and nuclear waste management or storage facilities.

Nuclear Suppliers Group (Country Group A:4)

Members are listed in Country Group A:4 (see Supplement No. 1 to 740 of the EAR). The member countries are Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea (South/Republic of), Latvia, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and the United States.




Office of Antiboycott Compliance

OECD Countries (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development)

The member countries are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, and the United States.


See Office of Foreign Assets Control

Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)

The Office of Foreign Assets Control of the U.S. Department of the Treasury administers and enforces economic and trade sanctions based on U.S. foreign policy and national security goals against targeted foreign countries, terrorists, international narcotics traffickers, and those engaged in activities related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.


Office of Munitions Control (now called Office of Defense Trade Controls)

Open Database Connectivity

An interface that allows client applications to access data from Database Management Systems on a server.



Packing List

A document identifying the number and kinds of items being shipped, as well as weight (gross and net), dimensions and other information required for transport.

Penalties (ITAR)

Any person who willfully violates any provision of the Arms Export Control Act; or in a registration, license application or report make any untrue statement of a material fact or omit a material fact required to be stated therein or necessary to make the statements therein not misleading shall, upon conviction, be subject to fine or imprisonment, or both.

Port of Exit or Entry

An application for a license must state the proposed port of exit from the United States. If applicable, the port of entry must also be stated. After a license is issued, the person to whom the license was issued must notify the Office of Defense Trade Controls in writing of any proposed change of the port prior to export. A copy of such written notification must be sent to the District Director of Customs at the new port.

Preferential Duty

Preferential duty is a levy based on the value of goods and their origin.

Pro Forma Invoice

An invoice provided by a supplier prior to the shipment of merchandise, informing the buyer of the kinds and quantities of goods to be sent, their value, and important specifications (weight, size, and similar characteristics).

Prohibited Exports and Sales (Proscribed and Embargoed Countries)

It is official U.S. policy to deny licenses, other approvals, exports and imports of defense articles and defense services in certain situations and to certain countries when such a shipment could, among other things, compromise world peace and security and/or not meet with the foreign policy objectives of the United States.

protected person

U.S. protected persons include political refugees and political asylum holders.

Public domain

Information which is published and which is generally accessible or available to the public: through sales at newsstands and bookstores; through subscriptions that are available without restriction to any individual who desires to obtain or purchase the published information; through second class mailing privileges granted by the U.S. Government; or, at libraries open to the public.




Quotas are restrictions on the amount or value of particular imports and/or exports.



Reasons for Controls - Chemical and Biological Weapons

Foreign policy controls aimed at preventing the proliferation of "unconventional" weapons and the precursors for producing chemical and biological warfare agents.

Reasons for Controls - Missile Technology

To control the proliferation of missiles capable of delivering weapons. In this context, "missiles" are defined as: "Rocket systems and unmanned air vehicle systems capable of delivering at least 500 kilograms payload to a range of at least 300 kilometers".

Reasons for Controls - National Security

The U.S. policy is to restrict exports that would make a significant contribution to the military potential of other countries to the detriment of the national security of the U.S. and its allies. Commodities controlled for national security purposes are referred to as "dual-use" commodities, having both commercial and military utility.

Reasons for Controls - Nuclear Non-Proliferation

To maintain controls over certain items because of their potential significance in the development of nuclear explosive devices.

Reasons for Controls - Other

Including "short supply" controls to protect the domestic economy from the excessive drain of scarce materials due to foreign demand; and other foreign policy controls.


See Consignee

Reexport License

Allows further movement to a new destination for U.S.-origin commodities that were previously licensed and exported from the U.S and is required whenever a shipment cannot be made under a License Exception.


For export control purposes: the shipment of U.S. origin products from one foreign destination to another. For statistical reporting purposes: exports of foreign-origin merchandise which have previously entered the United States for consumption or into Customs bonded warehouses for U.S. Foreign Trade Zones.

Registration of Manufacturers And Exporters

Any person in the United States who engages in the business of either manufacturing or exporting defense articles or furnishing defense services is required to register with the Office of Defense Trade Controls. Manufacturers who do not engage in exporting must nevertheless register.

Renewal and Disposition of Licenses

A license expires if the defense articles described in the license are not shipped within a specific time period. Defense articles to be shipped thereafter require a new application and license that should refer to the expired license.

Repair Declaration

When a good must be returned to the country of origin for repair, the U.S. company sending the merchendise must complete the Repair Declaration.

Restricted Persons/Party Screening (RPS)

See Denied Persons/Party Screening

Restrictive Trade Practices

It is illegal for a U.S. person to support an unsanctioned foreign boycott by refusing to do business with a boycotted country in agreement with or at the request of a boycotting country; taking discriminatory action against another U.S. person on the basis of race, religion, sex, or national origin; furnishing information about the race, religion, sex, or national origin of another U.S. person; furnishing information about business relationships.


See Denied Persons/Party Screening



Sarbanes-Oxley Act

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act was passed by Congress in 2002 in the wake of a number of corporate and accounting scandals that became public starting in the latter part of 2001. The Act aims to strengthen and restore confidence in the accounting profession; strengthen enforcement of the federal securities laws; improve the tone set by top management and executive responsibility; to improve disclosure and financial reporting; and improve the performance of research analysts, attorneys, rating agencies, financial experts, investment companies and related gatekeepers in capital markets.


See Sarbanes-Oxley Act


The ability to smoothly expand (or less often contract) an application as volume changes without requiring major system changes or impacting performance.

Schedule B

Term commonly used to refer to the code numbers for all commodities being exported.


Specially Designated Nationals


Shipper's Export Declaration

Servicing and Replacement (RPL) - License Exception

Authorizes the return of commodities that were imported into the U.S. for servicing and repair and where parts were exported under a license.

Shipment Summary Invoice

A Shipment Summary Invoice specifies summary details of total items shipped in term of quantity and weight.

Shipments by Mail

An export license for defense articles being sent abroad by mail must be filed with the postmaster, at the post office where the equipment is mailed, who will endorse each license to show the shipments made.


See Consignor

Shipper's Export Declaration (SED)

A Shipper's Export Declaration is the primary document for U.S. commercial exports that declares the existence of an applicable license or permission to export under an exception.

Shipper's Letter of Instruction

The instructions and details as to how the shipment is to be transported, insured, reference numbers and any other special instructions which pertain to the shipment.

Significant military equipment

Articles for which special export controls are warranted because of their capacity for substantial military utility or capability.


Significant Military Equipment


Simplified Network Application Process

SNAP (Simplified Network Application Process)

The Simplified Network Application Process is the Department of Commerce's automated system for the on-line submission of export license applications.


Subgroup on Nuclear Export Coordination

SNEC (Subgroup on Nuclear Export Coordination)

An interagency committee that issues recommendations on potentially sensitive dual-use nuclear-related exports.


See Sarbanes-Oxley Act

Specially Designated Nationals (SDN)

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) publishes lists of "Specially Designated Nationals", which are individuals and companies attempting to procure U.S.-origin goods on behalf of an embargoed-sanctioned country.

State Department Export Licensing

Only to U.S. persons and foreign governmental entities in the United States may be granted State Department licenses or other approvals.

Statement By Ultimate Consignee and Purchaser (BXA-711)

A document to be completed by the consignee and purchaser that details the complete name, address, intended end-use of goods, nature of business of the consignee and relationship to the exporter.


System for Tracking Export License Applications

STELA (System for Tracking Export License Applications)

STELA is an automated voice response system service provided by the Department of Commerce that provides applicants with the status of license and classification applications.

Supply Chain

The collective movement of materials and information from service providers and/or vendors through an enterprise's operations through to the delivery of products to the customer.




Technical Assistance Agreement

Table of Denial Orders (TDO)

Name has been changed to the Denied Persons List.


A tax for protective or revenue purposes placed upon goods imported into a customs area.

Tariff Barrier

Tariff barriers are levies placed on imports in order to drive up their landed cost.

Technical assistance agreement

An agreement (e.g., contract) for the performance of defense services or the disclosure of technical data, as opposed to an agreement granting a right or license to manufacture defense articles.

Technical data

Classified information relating to defense articles / defense services and their development or modification including repair or maintenance.

Technical Data/Software Restricted (TSR) - License Exception

For national security reasons only and provided the software or technology is destined to Country Group B, Technical Data/Software Restricted permits exports and reexports of technology and software controlled to the ultimate destination.

Technical Data/Software Unrestricted (TSU) - License Exception

Authorizes the export or reexport of the following classes of technical data and software: Operation technology and software, Sales technology, Software updates, or Mass Market software (except to Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria).

Temporary Export Licenses

The Office of Defense Trade Controls may issue a license for the temporary export of unclassified defense articles if it will be returned to the United States within 36 months and transfer of title will not occur during the period of temporary export.

Temporary Exports, and Reexports (TMP) - License Exception

Authorizes export and reexport of various commodities and software for temporary use outside the United States.


Non-binary data represented by strings of alphanumeric characters - usually ASCII codes - that contain no formatting.

Textile Declaration

All shipments of textiles or textile products over $250.00 U.S. and some shipments valued less than $250.00 U.S. require a "Textile Declaration" be prepared by the manufacturer, producer, exporter, or importer of the textiles or textile products.

Treasury Department Export Controls

The Department of the Treasury exercises control over the transfer of assets to certain countries through its regulatory arm - the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Treasury Department U.S. Customs

Now known as U.S. Department of Homeland Security U.S. Customs and Border Protection.


See Technical Data/Software Restricted (TSR) - License Exception


Trading With the Enemy Act




See United Nations

U.S. Customs

See U.S. Department of Homeland Security U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Department of Homeland Security U.S. Customs and Border Protection

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the single unified border agency of the United States providing "one face at the border".

U.S. Federal Register (F.R.) Rules and Notices

Published by the Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), the Federal Register is the official daily publication for rules, proposed rules, and notices of Federal agencies and organizations, as well as executive orders and other presidential documents.

U.S. Person (State Department Definition)

A person who is a lawful permanent resident; any corporation, business association, partnership, society, trust, or any other entity, organization or group that is incorporated to do business in the United States; or any governmental (federal, state or local) entity.

U.S. Possessions

Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, U.S. Minor Outlying Islands (Baker, Howland, Jarvis, Midway, Navassa and Wake Islands, Johnston and Palmyra Atolls, Kingman Reef)

U.S. Rulings

The evaluations made by U.S. Customs Rulings specialists in Washington D.C. ("Headquarters") or Port of New York ("N.Y. and Port") become the U.S. Rulings.

United Nations (U.N.)

The United Nations is a supranational orgnaization central to global efforts to solve problems that challenge humanity. It consists of about 190 member countries, six main organs (the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Trusteeship Council, the Secretariat and the International Court of Justice) and 30 affiliated organizations (known as the U.N. System).

United Nations (UN)

Intergovernmental organization comprised of most of the sovereign nations of the world that embodies international cooperation on economic, social, cultural, and humanitarian matters.

United States Arms Embargo Chart

An informal listing representing certain export of defense articles and defense services policies that is published in the Federal Register

United States General Services Administration (GSA)

The United States General Services Administration provide the workplaces for federal employees and facilitates procurement commercial products and services.

United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is an independent agency established to regulate civilian use of nuclear materials.

Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT ACT) Act of 2001

The USA Patriot Act allows investigators to use the tools that were already available to investigate organized crime and drug trafficking; facilitated information sharing and cooperation among government agencies; updated the law to reflect new technologies and new threats; and increased the penalties for those who commit terrorist crimes.


See Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism.

User (system security level)

The user security level allows access rights to alter local system configurations/settings and add data records but sometimes not to edit or delete. As well, it does not allow the ability to add, edit or delete the records of other users or to alter system wide configurations/settings.


United States Munitions List




Determining the value of goods in a shipment, mainly for customs purposes.

Value Added Tax (VAT)

Value Added Taxes are indirect levies placed on the increase in value of a good from raw material stage to final product for consumption.


See Value Added Tax

Violations (ITAR)

It is unlawful to import/export defense articles or technical data from the United States or to furnish any defense service for which a license or written approval is required by the ITAR without first obtaining the required license or written approval from the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC).


Validated License




See Wassenaar Arrangement

Wassenaar Arrangement

This agreement between Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, the Russian Federation, the Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States, is concerned with controlling exports of dual use goods.


See World Customs Organization

Web standards compliant browser

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), an international body comprised of hundreds of member organizations, develops the de facto standards for web related products. As such, an internet browser that meets the W3C standards for such technology is said to be 'compliant'.

World Customs Organization (WCO)

The World Customs Organization is an independent intergovernmental body whose mission is to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of Customs administrations.