Verifying Potential Suppliers in China: Resources to Gather Information When Importing from China

What is a China AIC and How Can it Help you Verify Suppliers when Importing from China?

When verifying Chinese suppliers, we will explain what a China AIC is and why they’re important for anyone who does business in China. Especially when you’re sourcing from China and looking for Chinese suppliers and factories to produce private label products to sell on Amazon FBA or other channels. These links will help you verify suppliers to mitigate your risk of being scammed.

AIC stands for Administration for Industry and Commerce. In essence it’s the national organization that governs all industry and commerce in China. In terms of the USA, think of it as the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Commerce all in one.

The AIC also has local offices in every region and just about every major city in China. Thus, the suppliers you work with are governed by the rules and regulations of their local AIC.

However, some of local AIC websites look like they’re combining to form one big national database, but it’s still worth trying to look for the local AIC first.

How is a China AIC Helpful to Me When Verifying Suppliers?

The China AICs can be very useful when trying to verify that a potential supplier is indeed a legitimate business entity.This goes a long way to decrease the odds of getting scammed. But don’t break out the confetti and champagne just yet. Like almost anything in China, there’s a catch.

It’s all in Chinese.

  • Registered name
  • Registration number
  • Legal representative
  • Registered address
  • Registered capital
  • Actual paid-up capital
  • Business status
  • Business type
  • Shareholders
  • Businessscope
  • Annual returns
  • Date of establishment
  • Period of operation
  • Registering authority
  • Processing authority
  • Business registration changes

So if you know Mandarin, or can decipher the translation, this information can be put to good use!

How Do I Find the AIC for a Specific Region?

You’re going to want to start your search for companies in their local region, and the AIC that has jurisdiction over it.

How Good is the Information on Chinese Suppliers?

It’s usually very accurate, but there is some lag time in the frequency in which they’re updated.

So if you are wanting to import from China or use any of the countless Chinese manufacturing suppliers,  you’ll want to verify and vet those potential suppliers. That’s why this website is a goldmine….IF you can read Chinese. What many e-commerce sellers do is hire a Chinese-speaking virtual assistant via Upwork that helps them with this so they can effectively verify suppliers for you.

Quick Tip: If you want to go this route, make sure when you post your job on Upwork, that you specify you want a Chinese person with experience working for either a logistics company or a factory. This way, they can usually get you much more pertinent information, as they know where additional resources can be accessed to aid you in your verification quest (bank accounts, insolvency, customs house registration, etc)

List of Chinese AIC Websites

Here is a comprehensive list of various national AND regional Chinese AIC company search websites.

National Company Search Website

Regional Company Search Websites

AIC Office Websites

These are the websites of each relevant AIC office, which include a much wider range of information and news (in Chinese).

Main National Chinese AIC Website

Regional Chinese AIC Websites

Local Chinese AIC Websites

Is There an Easier Way to Get This Information?

We’re glad you asked! As you probably know, Guided Imports provides this service for our customers as part of our A-Z and YPO service for any suppliers we have not previously worked with and trust.

However, we also suggest Examine China as an excellent resource for those that do not utilize Guided Imports full service packages. They put together a great report and send it right to your inbox so you can decide on whether to pursue a relationship with any suppliers you are vetting.

In short, when sourcing and importing from China, it’s a good habit to verify each supplier you are thinking about utilizing to ensure that you don’t get scammed. China is the manufacturing capitol of the world with literally tens of thousands of factories and trading companies. Along with this impressive number of suppliers comes more than a few shady, disreputable, and questionable businesses that end up scamming millions of dollars every year from foreign buyers who neglect to do their due diligence when sourcing and importing from China.

The price you’ll pay for NOT verifying a potential supplier is NOTHING compared to what it could cost you if you don’t! We’ve seen it happen to other customers who end up calling us in a panic begging us to try and help them out of an almost hopeless situation. Don’t let that be you!

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