Import Letters of Credit

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If you import goods, protect both yourself and your supplier with an Import Letter of Credit, a secure payment method for settling international trade transactions.

At a glance – key product features

  • Adds assurance to your underlying documentary trade transaction
  • Shows your supplier you have the ability to pay for the goods
  • Tailored by you to your needs, including terms for shipping, delivery, insurance and quality inspection

Key benefits

Provide your suppliers with more security of payment

Use a Letter of Credit to negotiate better terms, such as increasing the credit period

Can be used alongside our other Trade Finance solutions such as Buyer Loans

How an Import Letter of Credit works

A Letter of Credit also known as Documentary Credit is controlled through the banking system. It means your supplier has to provide specified documents to a bank in order to get paid.

It's a commitment from HSBC to your supplier stating it will receive payment within a set time limit, as long as clearly defined terms and conditions have been met.

Before an Import Letter of Credit can be issued, we’ll need to set up an HSBC trade facility for you.

Important information

Existing Trade Finance customers

If you don’t use HSBCnet for Trade Finance, you’ll find manual forms to apply for or amend a Letter of Credit, or to request early delivery of goods here.

Speak to a Trade Finance specialist

For new enquiries

Existing customers

Call us on

0345 600 1522

Lines are open from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays


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