Import solutions


Import payment solutions - an overview

Irrevocable documentary letters of credit (LCs)

LCs are a globally recognised solution offering a good deal of protection when doing business overseas as the payment from the importer is guaranteed by ANZ subject to documents presented by the exporter complying exactly with the LC terms (stipulated by the importer and agreed with the exporter). Any LC amendments must be agreed by all parties.

This product relies on the importer having an approved LC facility (subject to ANZ credit criteria) to enable the irrevocable LC to be issued and may give the importer the ability to negotiate a better overall deal price. You need to consider impact on your credit lines given possible timeframes and try to establish the LC as close as possible to shipment.

The exporters may then also request LC confirmation (usually subject to agreement and at an additional cost) which means that ANZ bank and country risks are then guaranteed by another bank (usually the exporter's bank).

LCs can be either at sight or if your supplier agrees terms. You will need to agree who will pay any discount and or acceptance fees.

Documentary collections

The importer's and exporter's banks act as collecting agents in the transaction as they monitor the payment and delivery of relevant documents for the goods release.

Term means that the exporter has extended credit to the importer who may accept the documents and pay at a later date (documents against acceptance). Payment of the term acceptance is reliant on the importer's ability to pay on the due date with loss of control of the goods by the exporter.

ANZ may add its aval or guarantee of importer payment to the term collection subject to ANZ credit criteria and the cost of the term guarantee.

Sight means the importer is requested to pay immediately on presentation of the collection documents (documents against payment).

While a collection offers a little more protection for the exporter, the importer's ability to choose when they pay is more limited.

Cash in advance

Cash in advance means that the exporter receives the payment for goods before they have been shipped. Payment is normally via telegraphic transfer, an electronic payment instruction sent by ANZ to an overseas bank (via SWIFT) to pay the exporter or beneficiary a specified amount of money.

The advantage to the exporter is speed of payment (usually within 24 hours) and payments can be in all major currencies.

The importer trusts that the exporter will honour the contract and deliver the goods on time and as specified.

Open account transactions

 Whether within NZ or across borders, open account transactions is the most common payment method.

The exporter ships the goods with an invoice and awaits the payment from the importer (usually via telegraphic transfer).

The importer has the advantage as there is no guarantee of payment on time - or even payment at all.

Forward exchange contracts

As an importer, you may be making payments to suppliers in a foreign currency.

There is a risk that the local currency value of the agreed payment amount increases or decreases during the term of the agreement, exposing your business to foreign exchange risk.

ANZ can assist in managing this exposure using a Forward Exchange Contract.

Foreign Currency Accounts and Term Deposits

Customers are able to conduct accounts and terms deposits in all major currencies.

ANZ Transactive Trade

ANZ's electronic channel which enables you to issue your LCs and amendments and to monitor your transactions.

Reporting is available and notices from the ANZ are also sent to you electronically.

Shipping guarantees / Airwaybill releases

Generally issued to shipping companies these financial obligations (subject to ANZ credit criteria) enable the importer to gain immediate access to the imported goods without producing the bills of lading where they may have been lost or receipt of the shipping documents has been delayed beyond goods arrival.

Note where goods are released under an airwaybill you are required to make payment under the import collection when presented for the goods notwithstanding any issues that may arise.

Contact us

We invite you to explore our range of import capabilities and solutions in greater detail. If you have questions or want more information, please contact our Trade Finance desk

Call 0800 269 873, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Important information

NZ lending criteria, conditions and eligibility criteria may apply and fees may be payable.

A copy of any applicable product disclosure statement in relation to Global Markets products is available, on request and free of charge, from 0800 107 562 (New Zealand).

Our Reserve Bank Disclosure Statement is available at or a request for a copy can be made at any branch. A copy of the ANZ Foreign Currency Term Deposit Investment Statement is available at