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Commercial invoice

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

When used in foreign trade, a commercial invoice is a customs document. It is used as a customs declaration provided by the person or corporation that is exporting an item across international borders.[1] Although there is no standard format, the document must include a few specific pieces of information such as the parties involved in the shipping transaction, the goods being transported, the country of manufacture, and the Harmonized System codes for those goods.[2] A commercial invoice must often include a statement certifying that the invoice is true, and a signature.

A commercial invoice is used to calculate tariffs, international commercial terms, and is commonly used for customs purposes. Commercial Invoices are generally not needed for shipments between EU Countries—just between EU Countries and non-EU Countries.[3]

Commercial invoices in European countries are not normally for payment. The definitive invoice for payment usually has only the words "invoice". This invoice can also be used as a commercial invoice if additional information is disclosed. Beginning in 2018, European Invoices must be electronic for use in public procurement as laid out in Directive 2014/55/EU.[4]

A sample commercial invoice format[5]

Fax: 999-999-9999
Tax ID/VAT/EIN# nnnnnnnnnn
XYZ Company
3 Able End
There, Shropshire, UK
Invoice Date: 12 December 2007 Invoice Number: 0256982
Carrier tracking number: 526555598 Sender's Reference: 5555555
Carrier: GHI Transport Company Recipient's Reference: 5555555
Quantity Country of Origin Description of Contents Harmonized Code Unit Weight Unit Value Subtotal (USD)
1,000 United States of America Widgets 999999 2 10.00 10,000
Total Net Weight (lbs): 2,000 Total Declared Value (USD): 10,000
Total Gross Weight (lbs): 2,050 Freight and Insurance Charges (USD): 300.00
Total Shipment Pieces: 1,000 Other Charges (USD): 30.00
Currency Code: USD Total Invoice Amount (USD): 10,330
Type of Export: Permanent Terms of Trade: Delivery Duty Unpaid
Reason for Export: stated reason
General Notes: notes and comments
The exporter of the products covered by this document - customs authorization number - declares that, except where otherwise clearly indicated, these products are of United States Of America preferential origin.

I/We hereby certify that the information on this invoice is true and correct and that the contents of this shipment are as stated above.

Name, Position in exporting company, company stamp, signature

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "FedEx - Tools - Commercial Invoice". www.fedex.com.
  2. ^ "About the Commercial Invoice". www.ups.com.
  3. ^ "What Is a Commercial Invoice for Export and When It's Required?". www.eurosender.com. 17 February 2020.
  4. ^ "2018: Key year for e-Invoicing in the European Union". www.globalinvoicing.com.
  5. ^ "DHL - Customs Paperwork".