Role and Flow of BL
Neko SenpaiNeko Senpai

About Role and Flow of BL

Video of This Article

Kamome SenpaiKamome Senpai

This is 3:05 video.

Today, I’d like to explain “the role of B/L” in international transportation.

What’s B/L?

First of all, what is B/L? It means Bill of Lading.
It’s an essential document for international trade.

B/L has two main roles. One is as a receipt for the shipment. The other is as a delivery note.

Simply put, without B/L, the importer cannot pick up a cargo.

You can also use B/L to control payment and delivery. Exporter can seize B/L and stop the delivery of cargo if payment for the cargo is not made.

Also, exporter can lower the risk of undispatched cargo by paying for the cargo after confirming that the cargo is properly loaded on a ship and B/L is issued.

Deal with B/L

To understand the role of B/L, you should learn when and by whom it is issued and how it is used.

Before explaining the flow, let me quickly introduce the characters and documents.Besides exporters and importers, their forwarders play an important role. And a document, D/O, is also important.

B/L flow

D/O stands for Delivery Order and is used to pick up a cargo at a port. You can get D/O by exchanging with B/L. The importer has to get B/L to get D/O, which is a delivery note.

Let’s take a look at the flow.

B/L is issued and sent to a seller by a forwarder on the export side once a ship leaves a port.
The seller confirms payment from the buyer and sends B/L to an importer, the buyer.

When the ship arrives at a port of entry, D/O is issued by a forwarder on the import side.
The buyer takes the B/L and exchanges it for D/O, which is a delivery note.

After Import

Let’s take a closer look at the flow on the import side.

A forwarder on the import side has D/O.
The buyer got B/L from the seller.
They exchange D/O and B/L.
The buyer can then pick up a cargo by taking the D/O to a port.

If you loose B/L

B/L is used to pick up a cargo. It means anyone, who has B/L, can pick up the cargo.
So, if a third party obtains it, it’s a big problem.

As a result, if you lose B/L, you won’t be able to pick up your cargo.
Be careful not to lose B/L.


Let’s summarize the points on B/L.

B/L is issued at the time of a ship’s departure.
A seller sends B/L to a buyer.
The B/L is exchanged for D/O, which is a delivery note.
If you lose B/L, you cannot pick up the cargo.

I talked about the basic roles of B/L this time.B/L is an important document for picking up a cargo.
In fact, B/L has different types, some of which are flexible enough to do speedy actions.

However, the basic idea is the one I have explained this time.
First of all, understand the above roles and flow of B/L.

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