International Trade Terms: Trade Alphabet Soup, Part H

Here is Part “H” of my series, “International Trade Alphabet Soup” that will periodically list and provide context for key acronyms and international trade terms:

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HCP — Hemispheric Cooperation Program was created during the failed negotiations to create the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA)  and aimed at strengthening the ability of all countries to fully participate in and to implement the FTAA.

HIPC — Heavily Indebted Poor Countries are 39 developing countries with high levels of poverty and debt which are eligible to receive debt relief from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and The World Bank.


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HS — Harmonized System (or the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System) is an internationally standardized system of names and numbers used to classify all the products that are traded around the world.

HTS — Harmonized Tariff Schedule uses the International Harmonized System (see above) to assign a six-digit classification code to goods traded around the world based on the name, use, and/or the component material(s); countries use the assigned codes to determine import taxes and for statistical purposes.

HTSUS — Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States is the legal resource for determining the classification code for goods imported into the United States and consequently, the tariff rate/import tax/customs duty applied to that good as it enters the United States.
As this is a short post, here is our recent post that discusses tariffs and other costs of doing business internationally, and how to minimize them.