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August 2020


Documents required for Customs Clearance

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Customs is one of the most important steps within the freight industry. Therefore, Customs clearance and document handling of custom brokers has previously been accompanied by a large price tag. As digital tariffs and multinational commoditising has entered the scene; custom brokers have also lost their importance within the field even though they play an important part.

As competition is increasingly becoming fiercer within the customs clearance field, companies operating are cutting corners by opting for younger, less experienced customs brokers. As such, they avoid hiring the much needed, highly experienced brokers that can offer higher efficiency and more insight. Furthermore, Custom Brokers ensure documents are filed correctly and are sent to the necessary people to make the importing of goods possible and more streamlined.


Within Australia, in general, there are no requirements for importers (individuals/companies) to hold an import license. However, depending on the nature of goods imported, the importer may need to obtain permits to clear their goods from customs control.

Labelling of Goods:

For general goods imported into Australia, there are no strict rules on labelling requirements by the Australian Border Force (ABF). However, if importers do not label goods that require labelling or don’t meet the strict requirements, their goods may be seized by Australian Customs as a result. If you are unsure of what labelling your goods require, it is always best to check out the ABF website for further information. Moreover, you will need to make sure to inform your supplier of the origin of such labelling requirements; as you will experience hold by Australian customs for correctly relabelling the goods upon arrival into Australia.

Bill of Lading:

The Carrier issues the Bill of Lading, which shows details of the cargo method of transportation.

(note: Airfreight use Airway bill, sea freight use Bill of Lading).

Declaration Fees and Charges:

The majority of Australian importers are aware of the GST and DUTY that Australian Customs charges for imported goods. However, other ‘admin’ charges are neglected. Therefore, for all customs entry lodgement, there are ‘lodgement fees/admin fees’ that are applicable.

The table below provides the summary:

Rule/Certificate of Origin:

Australia is one of the biggest importing countries in the world – we are very fortunate that the Australian government has signed various Free Trade Agreements (FTA) with other countries. Nevertheless, these FTA’s have different rules. In general, they benefit Australian importers by reducing or eliminating ‘Duty’ compared to the standard duty of 5% for the majority of generally imported goods). One of the most common methods to apply for eligibility under FTA is for origin suppliers/sellers to provide the Certificate of Origin (COO) for each shipment transported out of an FTA country. As such, the COO will determine where imported goods have originated from.

Australian Business Number:

Commercial importers require ABN numbers for the claiming of tax credits for GST purposes.


Some imported goods may be eligible for concession treatment under section 4 of the Customs Tariff Act 1995. This encompasses numerous types of goods to support a range of industry assistance objectives.


Environment, Logistics

Global Efforts for Sustainable Logistics

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The logistics industry is a key player in global trade but in environmentalists eyes, the industry could be making more of a conscious effort to assist in helping the environment. As time has passed, the logistics industry as a whole and individual operators have begun to make changes to their operations, swap out resources and regulate processes all to reduce their environmental footprint. Reducing emissions released into the air is one major way for companies to reduce their carbon footprint and assist in bettering the environment.

Reduce Emissions

Whilst the logistics industry relies on transporting goods from one place to another, it is a priority for companies to improve the emissions they release into the environment. Implementing a greener solution, will allow companies to reduce their carbon footprint. Today many logistics operators understand how each kilometre travelled, equates to noxious gases released into the air. With this understanding, operators can reduce the total number of kilometres travelled to reduce their gas output. This in turn lowers their carbon footprint.

Continuing into the future, logistics operators can focus on renewable resources to fuel their ships and cargo planes as well as renewable energy sources to fuel trucks and operate offices.  As these become more available, businesses will dramatically reduce their carbon footprint or become a zero emissions company.

An example of a net-zero emissions company in logistics is Qantas, who announced its commitment to becoming zero emissions by 2050. To allow this goal to come to fruition, Qantas will invest 50million dollars over the next 10 years to develop sustainable aviation fuels with much lower emissions compared to traditional jet fuels (Geck, 2019).

Energy Consumption

Reducing the overall energy consumption by a single transport operator could greatly impact the environment. By making small changes to operations in the office, at port and onboard could allow companies to make a smarter move to assist the environment. Although, there is currently the biggest debate in the transport industry that the fasted option isn’t always the most efficient yet the most efficient option isn’t the fastest option. This is where a lot of logistics companies struggle with the operation and the environment as they are trying to transport goods in a timely fashion whilst doing their best to use sustainable resources and reduce their environmental footprint.

Reducing Waste

Within the logistics industry, there are many products used in operation that have an expected lifespan. Whether that is tires, oils, parts and screens, the more frequent that a part is used the shorter its lifespan gets. When logistics companies are using their vehicles to return to distribution centres after delivery, they are using materials for no profitable gain which will, in turn, increase their waste generation. As a result, the company’s carbon footprint increases with every movement it makes. By limiting the amount of movement without goods and turnover of parts/waste, logistics companies can reduce their contribution to landfill and emissions produced into the environment.

Government Regulations

The Australian Government has strong legislation that logistics operators must abide by to trade and transport goods. Adhering to regulations about sustainability practices and resource management can allow operators to transport freely although there are rigid consequences such as fines, penalties and other criminal or civil consequences, that could be a repercussion of misunderstanding the legislation.

Within Australia, 99% of our exports are transported via sea freight, so, therefore, we have strict guidelines in place to protect our marine environment. The Protection of the Sea Act 1983 and the Navigation Act 2012 were implemented into domestic law to set out the legislative obligations relating to the prevention of accidental and operational marine environment pollution from shipping. The Australian Maritime Safety Authority is in charge of administering the protection of the sea legislation and is responsible for compliance by all bodies in the industry. Learn more.

For land or domestic freight, the Australian Government applies strict design rules (ADR) administered by the transport ministers, who regulate the noise and emissions produced by heavy vehicles. Since 2011, standards for heavy vehicles (ADR 80/03) to limit the amount of carbon, nitrous oxide and partial matters that can be produced by this vehicle.

For air freight, regulations are in place regarding shipments of dangerous goods and their impact on the environment, control of air quality and air noise. In an effort to reduce air noise, the Australian government controls the air traffic and the number of planes ready to fly to predict the overall emissions per flight.

The Australian Government has also set up an Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) to incentivise businesses to reduce their emissions across all operational activity.

Geck, M. 2019. Seven major companies that committed to net-zero emissions in 2019. Retrieved from:

TGL and Basics for Beirut

TGL links arms with local charity, Basics for Beirut, to ship two 40ft containers full of essential supplied to Lebanon.

TGL links arms with local charity, Basics for Beirut, to ship two 40ft containers full of essential supplied to Lebanon. 1080 1080 tgl_editor

August 17, 2020

Sydney based freight forwarding company TGL partners with local charity, Basics for Beirut and Steps of Hope, by assisting in the transportation of essential supplies after the devastating explosion in Beirut, Lebanon. As of the 4th September 2020, the donations will be shipped from Sydney, Australia via sea freight to the Port of Beirut, following the reopening of the Port.

Basics for Beirut are accepting physical donations of supplies ranging from childcare, toiletries, food, clothing and blankets as well as financial donations through their partner charity, Steps of Hope.
All physical and financial donations will go to help rebuild, rehome and feed the suffering citizens of Beirut.

To assist in the delivery of these essential supplies to Lebanon, TGL will provide the delivery of the two empty 40ft shipping containers to be filled, facilitate customs clearance, organise exporting shipping documents, book the required vessel that will transport the goods and to coordinate with the chosen Lebanese customs broker to ensure the shipping containers are cleared to enter Lebanon.

TGL’s donation will involve all of the costs surrounding the transportation of shipping containers and the goods from Sydney, Australia to Beirut, Lebanon.

As well as accepting donations, Basics for Beirut are hosting a gala dinner on the 28th August 2020 in order to gain further support and donations to recover Beirut.

TGL are a platinum sponsor for this event and will be attending the gala event to further donate and show community support for this important cause.


Contact Information:

TGL is a Sydney based freight forwarding company that offers logistics solutions to all sized businesses. With a mission to be the best movers of freight, TGL focuses on their customers, clients and staff with innovative thinking and strategic problem-solving. The services available through TGL are air freight, sea freight, domestic transport, warehousing and customs clearance.

10 Facts about Freight Forwarders

10 Freight Forwarding Facts

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Want to know more about Freight Forwarding? Here are 10 facts that I bet you didn’t know

1. Freight Forwarders can help business A LOT

Freight forwarders can assist your business in all of your logistics and shipping needs but they also take the responsibility for your shipments arriving on time. They are an end to end business support system that will use their expertise to determine routes, the best shipping partners and price available to your business

2. Freight Forwarders offer multiple services

Usually, most freight forwarding companies offer a number of services to their customers. These services range from; air freight, sea freight, domestic or land freight, distribution warehousing, and customs clearance.

3. Freight forwarders alleviate logistics stress

Using a freight forwarding company means you can alleviate the stress that surrounds importing and exporting goods, especially if you’re an international buyer or seller. Having a freight forwarder will allow you to rely on their expertise to ensure your goods will arrive on the agreed time as well as assisting in customs clearance , document generation and facilitation between shipping partners.

4. Freight Forwarders are not to blame for your shipping delay

When there is a shipping delay it is usually out of the freight forwarders hands.  Shipping delays can occur due to bad weather conditions, delays in different ports, vessel breakdowns and any unforeseen changes to the route. In fact, the freight forwarder is usually trying to resolve the problem at their end to ensure the goods reach their final destination in a timely manner.

5. Freight forwarders abide by strict regulations.

There is strict protocol that all freight forwarders must abide by when shipping goods internationally. For example, in Australia all businesses associated with global trade report to the Australian Trade and Investment Commission. This government body ensures that businesses importing and exporting from Australia all follow the same regulations. Most regulations surround the topics of:

  • Dangerous Goods
  • Perishable Goods (eg. Fruit & vegetables)
  • Drugs (eg. Prescription & recreational)
  • Alcohols
  • Batteries
6. There are specialist freight forwarders.

Just like most other occupations, in freight forwarding, there are specialists that have expertise in the different modes of transporting cargo. Some freight forwarding companies handle many clients within one category of freight forwarding, so, therefore, they are more knowledgeable in that field. It is advised that you source a freight forwarder that is an expert in dealing with your cargo type.

7. Freight forwarders deal with documentation & different information a lot

Because freight forwarders handle multiple clients cargo all the time, they are experts in filling out the specific documentation linked to importing or exporting goods. Documents such as commercial invoices, bill of landing, shippers’ export declaration and inspection certificates. These documents help you to ensure that your customers receive their goods and also act as a layer of security in case of loss or damage.

8. The speed of logistics has improved with time

A lot of global traders are hesitant to use sea freight because of the considerably long time span that it takes to ship goods across seas. As time has passed, shipping services have worked hard to improve their speed of travel allowing it to be more accessible to many other global trade partners.

9. The strength of a freight forwarder’ network is vital.

A well-established freight forwarder will have a strong and reliable network of contacts that can assist in your logistics needs. This will not only allow you to get a great price for shipping your goods but it will ensure that they arrive in a timely manner.

10. Shipping through freight is cost effective!

Believe it or not, transporting your goods through a freight forwarder can be one of the cheaper solutions. The shipping costs usually depend on the size of the cargo, quantity and the destination it is travelling to. This information is all used by the freight forwarder to quote for their services.

Sydney Waterfront Industrial Action - Wharf Strike September 2020

Shipping Terms Explained

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What is LCL?

LCL means Less than Container Load. This type of shipment is used when a shipper doesn’t have enough goods to fill an entire container. Further, the shipment comprises of consolidated goods from multiple shippers to fill the container.

What is FCL?

FCL means Full Container Load. An FCL ocean shipment refers to a shipment used by a shipper who occupies a full container, of any size. Therefore, the shipment contains goods from one shipper and is not shared.

What is the difference between LCL & FCL?

LCL shipping is used when there are isn’t enough cargo to fill and occupy an entire container. This type of shipment allows you to lower your warehousing costs, for example, when you are stocking a warehouse until you can select an FCL shipment to lower costs. However, the cost of an LCL shipment is higher than an FCL shipment and may take longer to be delivered.

LCL shipments, when shared between multiple parties, may have different delivery addresses that need to stop at various ports, open and rework the containers, which may cause delays.

FCL shipment costs are lower than LCL, as the cost unit per freight is lower than LCL. Although, importing feeds will still need to be paid regardless of the size of shipment and type of container. Furthermore, FCL shipments have faster lead times and include cargo that is meant for a single party, rather than multiple parties.

TGL is built on a foundation of simplicity, transparency and the people. Our knowledgeable freight forwarder team strive to serve your business’ needs to deliver your freight on time.

Victoria’s State of Disaster – Freight Update

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Following Sunday’s address from Victoria’s the Hon Daniel Andrews PM, the state of Victoria has been declared in a State of Disaster. Strict restrictions have been enforced for the public and businesses operating within the state. Many of which restrictions impact the freight and logistics businesses of Victoria and all other domestic trade partners. 

The following restrictions are most impactful to these industries;

  • A number of permitted industry workplaces in metropolitan Melbourne are to close or are permitted to conduct restricted operations;
  • Retail stores will be permitted to accept stock and operate contactless ‘click and collect’ and delivery services with strict safety protocol in place;
  • Confirmation was received that ports, airports, freight and logistics may continue operations with strict safety protocol in place.

It is imperative to note that while there is business continuity, all Victorians are required to work from home, except where it is not practical. 

Although ports, airports, freight and logistics services may continue, Qantas Freight has temporarily paused all freight operations in Melbourne Freight terminals in response to advice from the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services. 

Qantas Freight confirms that freight terminals will remain closed until at least midnight 04 August 2020 and that freight can neither be lodged or collected at either terminal. Freight services will return to normal as soon as possible with current updates available from Qantas HERE

In an attempt to keep the logistics and freight industries running smoothly, the Freight and Trade Alliance (FTA) and Australian Peak Shippers Association (APSA) took an opportunity to advocate for all importers by expressing the need to take deliveries and unload filled containers.

During this advocacy, FTA and APSA stated that it is “Critical that all imports are allowed to flow otherwise we will quickly have an estimated 300,000 containers over the next six weeks quickly congesting our wharves and impeding the delivery of all goods such as food, PPE and medical supplies.”

“Importing containers need to be unpacked and made available to our exporters, in particular to support our struggling agriculture sector that are expecting substantial crops this Spring and are desperate to reach overseas markets.”

To keep up to date with the current Covid-19 restrictions and the impact on the Australian freight landscape, refer to our recent articles.

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