OBL not released OBL not surrendered no telex release


The information provided here is part of Export Import Training online


Un able to take delivery of goods due to ‘OBL NOT RELEASED’, ‘OBL NOT SURRENDERED’,   ‘NO TELEX RELEASE’


After reading below aricle, you can also read  Surrender of Bill of Lading – Some facts


Oh… This is horrible. Once after completion of import customs clearance formalities at destination port, when approaching for delivery of import container, carrier says – OBL not released OBL not surrendered no telex releaseOBL NOT SURRENDERED, OBL NOT RELEASED or NO TELEX RELEASE. Means, the carrier at destination port cannot release imported goods without solving this issue.


In this article, I would like to invite your attention on one of my bitter experience in handling import clearance.


Let me explain this issue in simple terms to make you easily understand:


You (importer) have an import cargo to be cleared out from port. You have completed import customs procedures and formalities and ‘passed out of customs’. The shipping company or freight forwarder who carried your goods not releasing cargo toyou as they say ‘BL not released at load port’ or ‘BL not surrendered at port of loading’. What does this mean?


You need to have original bill of lading of the shipment, copy of message from load port saying, ‘not to insist for original bill of lading’, or a copy of ‘express Bill of Lading’. If you do not have any one of the three, you cannot receive goods from shipping company or freight forwarder who carried goods.


If your shipping company says ‘OBL not released at origin port’ means your supplier (exporter) has not yet released the bill of lading from carrier at port of loading. It happens due to non- payment of ocean freight, by oversight or any other specific reasons. In many cases, this default is happened due to non-payment of ocean freight by exporter. In some cases, the value of cargo will be lesser than ocean freight and the said cargo has to be moved too far from the supplier, obviously the ocean freight will be very high. So the exporter takes advantages of more time to pay ocean freight. However, some of the reputed shipping lines impose penal charges to exporters, who do not release bill of lading within a stipulated period of sailing of vessel from origin load port.


If your cargo is handled by a freight forwarder, he would not have received ocean freight from your supplier at load port against the said shipment. So your exporter would not have released original bill of lading from the freight forwarder at load port.

What did you learn from this article as an Importer of goods by Sea? If you import any goods from foreign countries by sea, make sure the following:


1. Ensure you have Original Bill of Lading in your hand

2. If OBL surrendered at load port, make sure, you have proof of message sent by the carrier of goods to his counterpart at destination port stating to release cargo without OBL and not to insist Original Bill of Lading from the consignee. You can collect this message through your supplier/exporter well in advance, before arrival of goods at destination port.

3. If SEA WAY BILL / EXPRESS RELEASE BILL OF LADING is issued, please keep a copy with you and confirm with carrier at destination port well before arrival of goods.  You can also read Surrender of Bill of Lading – Some facts    Can Original Bill of lading be surrendered under DP terms of payment    Can Original Bill of lading be surrendered under LC at sight

In this article, I have explained about the importance of Bill of Lading in Import delivery of goods and Difficulties in import delivery of goods due to late release of Bill of Lading by exporter/seller/supplier. Do you wish to add more information about this subject - OBL NOT SURRENDERED, OBL NOT RELEASED or NO TELEX RELEASE?


Did you like this article about the terms - OBL NOT SURRENDERED, OBL NOT RELEASED or NO TELEX RELEASE.  Have you experienced these hassles in import delivery of goods? Share below your experience.


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The above information is a part of Import Export online Training

Other details on how to import export  


Why demurrage/detention waiver period is required at destination for import

 Difference between Demurrage and Detention in import

Can an importer take delivery of goods without original bill of lading?

Difference between MBL and HBL. How MBL works and How HBL works

Difference between Vessel arriving and Vessel birthing in export import trade

What is Black list certificate from Shipping Line

Excise and Customs - Click here to read complete notification under Budget 2014

How to get Export Orders?

How to settle dispute in Exports and Imports?

Click here to know India Trade Classification(ITC)

Click here to know HS code of other product/commodity

Pre shipment bank finance to suppliers for exports through other agencies

Types of export containers
Measurement of export containers
Foreign Trade Policy of India 2015-2020
MEIS, Merchandise Exports from India Scheme
SEIS, Service Exports from India Scheme
Merge your Commercial Invoice and Packing List for all your future exports
Export procedures and documentation


narayanan: In export 3 OBLS issued to customer and consignee present only one copy of OBL, is it okie to accept and release the cargo against 1 OBL ?

Surendran Kollerath: Hi Narayanan, Normally carrier release import shipment by accepting one original Bill of Lading duly endorsed . However, you may reconfirm with your carrier before proceeding.

Prem Garg: Hi Mr Surendran/Narayan We purchased certain machinery from Dubai.All the local charges except the ocean freight from Dubai to Mundra were paid to the Freight forwarder who sent The draft bill of lading sent to us(importer) showing the seller /exporter consignor as shipper of custom Dubai r and ourselves as consignee, for our confirmation of the contents. it is to informed that the stuffed containers accompanied by the delivery advice , packing list was sent by the shipper /exporter to The Director Dubai Custiom declaring regarding export of goods to us(importer) and confirming that the shipper/consignor /exporter has received all sale consideration from us (importer) The agents of the shipping lines in India asked for the orginal Bill of lading or wanted the shipper /exporter/consignor to surrender the bill of lading at port of origin.ON inquiry the exporter /shipper informed that the shipping line has not released the original Bill Lading to the exporter /shipper/consignor. Meanwhile we(importer) received a bill of un believable amount under the garb of local charges and ocean freight from the freight forwarder (which were already paid such freight forwarder) The name of such freight forwarder neither appear anywhere in the custom declaration submitted to Dubai custom nor in the draft bill of lading prepared by the Shipping lines.The said freight forwarder further threatened us that he will release OBL only after his bill is not paid.Also it has been learnt that the shipping line has neither issued the Original bill of lading nor delivered the same to the Dubai exporter/shipper. We seek your advice 1.if the shipping lines can deliver the OBL to the such freight forwarder instead of shipper/exporter. 2.Can the freight forwarder claim more than the ocean freight after the cargo was out for export by Dubai Custom.Although the freight forwarder was not paid or if there was any amount due the freight forwarder would not have get the cargo ,custom cleared or allowed for shipment We seek your expert advice as per marine laws /commercial laws of the land in the circumstances to enable us (importer ) to get the delivery of the cargo in the absence of Original Bill of Lading not issued/delivered .The shipper /exporter is ready to issue any letter any declaration letter to the Dubai custom and the shipping lines for delivery of the cargo to us (Importer) The Cargo has already landed at Mundra port Regards Prem Garg

Shreyansh P. Shah: We are Ahmedabad based manufacturing company. We released 100% Payment to exporter but they are not releasing OBL saying we do not get payment. We also have proof of payment but exporter also stop replying. We have following questions.1. Can we get goods delivery from shipping company without submitting OBL? 2. Are we liable to pay shipping and concor detention / demurrage charges if we do no get OBL from exporter? 3. We already paid custom duty on based of copy of documents. We contact custom department and they say you can not get refund of custom duty because container is out of charge. Is it like so? We believe there must be provision to get refund of custom duty. Pl inform.

A.Manoharan: I have filed an advance bill of Entry and debited the BCD under MEIS scrip. SWS and IGST paid in cash. Unfortunately the cargo not entered even after 30 days and the Prior BE automatically lapsed. If I apply refund, shall I also get the BCD which was debited under MEIS. Can you confirm any Cicular/Notification in this regard,

Zeera: If we encounter this problem, how to resolved it. You had mention the situation and importancy of original bl / surrender at POD. But if shipper missing and loss contact after cargo reach POD and consignee unable to contact shipper for original bl or surrender then what solution we have to resolve this issue to get back the cargo.

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