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Resource Links

As your trusted International Trade advisors, we work hard to provide you with comprehensive resources that go beyond traditional finance needs.  Below are a variety of helpful links* to aid in your global transactions.

International Credit Checks

Before trading with a foreign company you should investigate their credit. Below are various companies that may be able to provide international credit checks. Please be aware that some of these companies may charge a fee for this service. National Penn Bank does not endorse one company over another and simply lists these sites for your convenience.

Dun & Bradstreet (http://www.dnb.com): Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) provides a variety of reports on companies around the world. The International Business Information Report includes evaluations of an organization’s operations, profitability and stability. In addition, the International Risk and Payment Review is a monthly publication which tracks the economic, political and commercial risk factors that affect trade.

Fitch Inc. (http://www.fitchratings.com/corporate/index.cfm): Fitch is an international rating agency that is fully committed to serving capital market participants by providing the highest quality ratings and research. They have a presence in numerous countries and rate financial institutions, corporates, insurance companies and sovereigns.

Graydon Group (http://www.graydon-group.com): The Graydon Group provides information about potential business partners in numerous countries. They provide direct access to reports from dozens of countries.

Owens Online (http://www.owens.com/): Owens Online is an international credit and background check agency that has attracted clients 

Country Conditions

Before trading in a particular country you should investigate the country and political risk. Below is a sample of sources, some of which may charge for their services.

Central Intelligence Agency(https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/index.html): The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) produces the World Fact Book which includes country profiles.

CountryWatch.com (www.countrywatch.com): CountryWatch.com is an information provider for anyone who needs up-to-date information and news on the countries of the world and for the public and private sector organizations with global operations and interests. Standard and Premium Online Subscriptions to CountryWatch.com are available.

Fitch Inc. (http://www.fitchratings.com/corporate/index.cfm): Fitch is an international rating agency that is fully committed to serving capital market participants by providing the highest quality ratings and research. They have a presence in numerous countries and rate financial institutions, corporates, insurance companies and sovereigns.

International Monetary Fund (http://www.imf.org): The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international organization that was established in 1946 and now includes 183 member countries. The purpose is to promote international monetary cooperation, exchange stability, and orderly exchange arrangements; to foster economic growth and high levels of employment; and to provide temporary financial assistance to countries to help ease their balance of payments adjustment. The operations of the IMF involve surveillance, financial assistance, and technical assistance. Their website offers a broad array of country information.

International Trade Administration (http://www.trade.gov): The International Trade Administration (ITA) is a government agency with a mission to help exporters. The ITA operates the Trade Information Center; The Center provides statistical data for exporters and a wealth of information regarding all federal export assistance programs as well as country and regional market information.

Trade Compliance Center (www.export.gov/tcc): The Trade Compliance Center (TCC) located in the Market Access and Compliance (MAC) unit of the U.S. Dept. of Commerce is designed to help American exporters facing foreign trade barriers and to assure that foreign countries comply with their trade commitments.

U.S. Department of State (http://www.state.gov/countries/): The U.S. Department of State provides detailed background notes and additional information for each country.


Proscribed Parties

Before trading with a foreign company, you should check the denied entities list to ensure that trade with a given individual, company or country is not prohibited.

Office of Foreign Asset Control(http://www.treas.gov/offices/enforcement/ofac/): CountryWatch.com is an information provider for anyone who needs up-to-date information and news on the countries of the world and for the public and private sector organizations with global operations and interests. Standard and Premium Online Subscriptions to CountryWatch.com are available.

U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security(http://www.bis.doc.gov/DPL/Default.shtm): The Bureau of Industry and Security produces their own denied person list that can be searched on their site.

Export Assistance Organizations

The following organizations may provide additional information, particularly on exports, that you will find useful. Please contact National Penn directly if you wish to apply for trade financing, insurance or other local or federal government sponsored programs.

Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce(http://www.greaterreadingchamber.org/): The International Business Committee of the Berks County Chamber provides services aimed at increasing the understanding of International trade, particularly with respect to Berks County. In addition, the Foreign Trade Zone Corporation of Southeastern Pennsylvania can provide benefits to companies importing goods.

Bucks County International Trade Council (http://www.bcitc.org): The Bucks County International Trade Council is a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering international trade between local and foreign companies. Members can receive international counseling, trade leads, a quarterly newsletter and participate in educational and networking events.

Chester County International Trade Council

(www..cceconomicdevelopment.com/services/international-business/): The Chester County International Trade Council was created to help local companies establish a presence in global markets.

Ex-Im Bank (www.exim.gov): The Ex-Im Bank is dedicated to supporting U.S. Exports and sustaining American jobs by offering the services U.S. businesses need in order to compete globally. They have a wide range of insurance policies, loan programs and guarantees available to accommodate different exporting needs. Ex-Im Bank also runs a joint program between individual states, and local entities around the country to bring their financing services to small businesses that are ready to export.

FCIA Management Company, Inc. (http://www.fcia.com): FCIA Management Company, Inc. (FCIA) is a private insurance organization that provides credit insurance to protect both export and domestic sales. They specialize in offering flexible coverage options against nonpayment risks, whether resulting from commercial or political events. Their coverage is available to U.S. businesses on their customers worldwide.

Office of Defense Trade Controls-Bureau of Political Military Affairs(http://www.pmdtc.org/): The Office of Defense Trade Controls, Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, in accordance with the Arms Export Control Act and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations, is charged with controlling the export and temporary import of defense articles and defense services covered by the United States Munitions List. It has among its primary missions (a) taking final action on license applications for defense trade exports and (b) handling matters related to defense trade compliance, enforcement, and reporting.

Overseas Private Investment Corporation (www.opic.gov): Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) facilitates the investment of private capital from the United States to less developed countries and countries in transition to a market economy, thereby complementing the development assistance objectives of the U.S.

Small Business Administration (www.sba.gov/category/navigation-structure/loans-grants): The Small Business Administration (SBA) provides information on entering the global marketplace, linking a U.S. firm with foreign buyers and exporting resources.

State of Pennsylvania (http://www.inventpa.com): The Pennsylvania Department of Commerce and Economic Development has divided the 67 counties within Pennsylvania into ten regions that are each serviced by a different export assistance partner. As a whole, these partners are known as the Team Pennsylvania Export Network. The three regional export assistance partners servicing the Bank’s primary marketplace are listed below:

  • Lehigh University Small Business Development Center(http://www.lehigh.edu/~insbdc/index.html): Lehigh University’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) provides consulting at no cost to businesses in all stages of development, from pre-venture stage to mature stage. Their International Trade Development Program (ITDP) provides counseling, develops international marketing plans, and organizes and conducts seminars, workshops and courses to facilitate export trade.
  • Southeastern Pennsylvania Export Consortium – Delaware River Port Authority (www.drpa.org): Southeastern Pennsylvania Export Consortium (SEPEC) services Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, each of which has a trade specialist working in the county. SEPEC provides export counseling, educational seminars and quarterly meetings.
  • World Trade Center - Harrisburg (http://www.hwtc.org/): The World Trade Center - Harrisburg is a membership supported organization that provides information and referral services, educational programs and networking opportunities in an effort to promote international trade. The organization works with interested companies individually to assist them with export related research and technical assistance, primarily in the Southcentral Pennsylvania region.

The Bureau of Industry and Security (www.bis.doc.gov/): The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) regulates exports and enforces compliance of the regulations. The BIS develops export control policies, issues export licenses, prosecutes violators, and implements the Export Administration Act’s (EAA) antiboycott provisions.

International Trade Administration (www.ita.doc.gov): The International Trade Administration (ITA) helps U.S. businesses participate in global markets by ensuring access to these markets and safeguarding businesses from unfair competition. There are four units including the Commercial Service, Trade Development, Market Access and Compliance and Import Administration. The ITA also provides a link to the U.S. Government Export Portal (http://www.export.gov/) which provides a wealth of exporting information, including quick reference guides, press releases, helpful links and information on U.S. trade missions.

U.S. Commercial Service (www.buyusa.org): The Commercial Service is the global business solutions unit of the Department of Commerce. They have a global network with extensive knowledge of markets and industries. They focus on small and mid-sized businesses.

World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia(http://www.wtcphila.org/): The World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia provides international trade opportunities to members. Services include educational and training seminars, international trade consulting and market research and exclusive networking opportunities.

Freight Forwarders & Custom House Brokers

Ozburn-Hessey Logistics, LLC (http://www.ohl.com): OHL is a world reknown leader and innovator in international logistics. They provide a broad array of transportation, warehousing, and distribution services. OHL has offices in all major U.S. trading centers and an off-shore facility in Hong Kong.

BDP International Inc. (http://www.bdpint.com/): BDP International is a leading company in the field of global freight logistics and transportation management for the chemical industry.

John A. Steer Company (http://www.jasteer.com): John A. Steer Company is a major Philadelphia-based freight forwarder and custom house broker. They have been in business since 1905 and continue to provide individualized service to the import/export community.

International Inspection Services

Intertek Testing Services (http://www.intertek.com/): Intertek Testing Services (ITS) is a global leader in testing, inspection and certification services. They have offices and laboratories located around the world to do testing on products and commodities including textiles, toys, petroleum, chemicals, electrical and electronic products and some agricultural produce.

SGS Group (http://www.sgs.com): SGS Group is a leading company in verification, testing and product inspection, which can be contracted to inspect goods & produce a certificate of compliance with specific standards which may in turn be a required document for a letter of credit.


Language Translation

Inlingua (http://www.inlingua.com): Inlingua is an intercultural communication solutions group which has an international network of almost 300 language centers. They provide language and intercultural training to over half a million clients every year.

Language Line Services Inc. (http://www.languageline.com): Language Line Services has bridged businesses and consumers through quality communications since 1984. They provide over-the-phone interpretation and document translation services in more than 140 languages.

Language Services Associates (http://www.lsaweb.com): Language Services Associates (LSA) is a privately owned, full service language company based in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1991, LSA has been facilitating communication for world-renowned organizations, small businesses, federal and state government, as well as private individuals, with the same standards of excellence for all.

Trade Related Organizations

Federation of International Trade Associations(http://www.fita.org): The Federation of International Trade Associations (FITA) supports international trade by strengthening the role of associations throughout North America that have an international mission. Member associations fall into six broad categories: World Trade Clubs/International Trade Associations, Associations/Chambers of Commerce with regional/Bi-Lateral Interests, Associations Focused on International Logistics, Associations Supporting International Trade, Associations Supporting Exporters and Professional Associations.

Global Technology Network (www.usgtn.net): The Global Technology Network (GTN) is an internet-based trade lead/business matching service. It is funded and administered by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to promote it's mission - development through trade and technology transfer.

International Monetary Fund (www.imf.org): The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international organization that was established in 1946 and now includes 183 member countries. The purpose is to promote international monetary cooperation, exchange stability, and orderly exchange arrangements; to foster economic growth and high levels of employment; and to provide temporary financial assistance to countries to help ease balance of payments adjustment. The operations of the IMF involve surveillance, financial assistance, and technical assistance.

National Institute of Standards and Technology(http://ts.nist.gov/ts/htdocs/230/235/appxc/appxc.htm): The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is a non-regulatory federal agency within the Commerce Department's Technology Administration. NIST's mission is to promote economic growth by working with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements, and standards. NIST carries out its mission through four interwoven programs: NIST Laboratories, Baldridge National Quality Program, Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and Advanced Technology Program. Their web-site provides various units of measurement as well as metric conversion tables.

U.S. Department of Commerce (www.commerce.gov): The Department of Commerce provides export-related assistance and market information, as well as trade opportunities for U.S. business. The Web site also provides links to detailed export regulations and trade statistics.

United Nations Industrial Development Organization(www.unido.org): The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations which has responsibility for promoting industrialization throughout the developing world. Its core functions include generating and disseminating information relating to industrial matters and designing and implementing programs to support its clients.

U.S. Census Bureau (http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/www/index.html): The U.S. Census Bureau provides foreign trade statistics, including current and historical trade data. Some data is available on-line for free while certain data is only available on CD-ROM through subscriptions. The Foreign Trade Division of the U.S. Census Bureau in conjunction with STAT-USA also provide an on-line service with specific U.S. export and import information on more than 18,000 commodities world wide.

World Trade Organization (http://www.wto.org/): The World Trade Organization (WTO) is a global association dedicated to helping the producers of goods and services across borders, by dealing with the rules of trade between nations.

Reference Tools

International Dialing Codes (http://kropla.com/dialcode.htm): This site offers a complete guide to international dialing, including international prefixes, country codes, and national prefixes.

Global Time (http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/): This site provides the time in cities around the world as well as a fixed time calculator (i.e. If it’s 3 p.m. in Philadelphia, what time is it in Sydney?).


Contact our International Trade team at 888.461.1864 or international@nationalpenn.com.

*National Penn does not recommend or endorse these organizations or the information provided over any other similar organizations or information. We take no responsibility for the information contained on these sites. These links are provided for your convenience.

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