The Need for Export – Basic Survival In A Shrinking World

Today, if one asks around or discusses business with anyone, the first thing you are told is how bad the economy is and how bad business is – yet – the supermarkets are full, roads are full of trafic, shopping malls are full and most companies are still ticking over, people certainly aren’t getting rich as quickly as they were during boom times but , business is there!

International trade is no different and the truth is that opportunities are much wider in a wider world.

Local markets , by definition , are limited and any manufacturing company wishing to survive and achieve any modicum of growth in today’s market has to look beyond their own borders and get involved in export. This is especially true of the mining supplies industry as a whole, due to the shrinking mineral reserves we have in South Africa and other countries are experiencing the same phenomenon.this applies equally to the minerals themselves as the local market is also shrinking due to globalisation.

Bentley Island Photo
Many companies who have not previously been involved in international trade are more than a little concerned about this “unknown “ field but fortunately, there are many international trading companies around whose business is to partner with producers and manufacturers and who have built up knowledgeable and well-connected export teams whose primary focus is to achieve this aim. they will gladly accept this function on an outsourced basis as your partners in the export venture.

As with mining itself however, meeting the logistics needs of servicing the new areas we are operating in has similar challenges. Minerals are very rarely situated in “convenient” areas but , instead of seeing these as major challenges, these present opportunities for many other players to come on board and participate in these projects . many new skill sets are developed and the ability to operate without the confines of a “box” to think in is paramount. The only guarantee we have is that everything can, and will change. as long as these challenges are faced , oportunities for growth are created.

Shipping itself is one of these challenges. Bentley Professional Freight Management , with our numerous contacts around the world is perfectly placed to assist you with these.

Most minerals are found in areas of the world with similar conditions of climate or produce products similar to our own in south africa , which means that these are not “natural” trade routes. Natural trade routes are, as a rule, in a North / South direction, where you have raw materials and minerals, as well as agricultural produce, being sourced from the Southern hemisphere and finished products – eg motor vehicles, white goods, black goods etc from the North – so you would find that South Africa would tend to trade with Europe and Mediterranean countries, Australia with the Far East and South America with North America and Canada. There are of course “cross trades” where SA trades with Far Eastern countries , Australia with Europe etc but these are all still generally north / south. Today, as globalisation of major corporations is developing, you may find that , for example , a motor manufacturer may source their engines from Korea , windscreens from South Africa, tyres from India , computers from China etc and the whole vehicle built up in Australia – which puts a whole new light on international trade. This is happening in other industries as well on an increasing basis and your product could very well be one of the components they are looking for.

South Africa’s traditional trading niche has been Africa, where we have built strong relationships with local entities and governments.

Expansion into other “non traditional areas” of the world has also meant that you may have d to resort to “piggy backing” on other charters where someone else has fixed a base cargo for the ship and we can usually manage to get the ship to accept your containers to go along with them.

If you do not have a logistics or export department and need help why not give us a call – we can handle yourfreight management function for you at very realistic rates on a totally independent , outsourced basis. we are not clearing and forwarding agents and happily work with many different C&F agencies as well

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