Close this search box.

Table of Contents

General Order (GO)


General Order (GO) is a term used primarily in the United States municipal bond market. It refers to bonds issued by a local government, which are backed by the full faith and credit of the issuer, and rely on that entity’s taxing authority for repayment. In contrast to revenue bonds, GO bonds are not secured by a specific revenue stream but rather depend on the general financial health and creditworthiness of the issuer.


The phonetics of the keyword “General Order (GO)” are:General: ˈʤɛnərəlOrder: ˈɔːrdərGO: ʤi ˈoʊ

Key Takeaways

  1. The first main takeaway about General Order (GO) is that it outlines the policies, procedures, and guidelines that govern the conduct and activities of a particular organization.
  2. The second main takeaway is that GOs are issued by an organization’s highest authority and are essential in maintaining order, discipline and efficient operation within the organization.
  3. Lastly, the third main takeaway is that General Orders are subject to change and revision as needed, ensuring that they remain current and relevant in addressing the evolving needs of the organization they serve.


The business/finance term General Order (GO) is important because it represents a standardized set of guidelines and procedures that streamline the management of day-to-day operations within an organization. A GO enables businesses to maintain consistency, enhance efficiency, and ensure proper communication across various departments, leading to better coordination when making important decisions. As a tool for promoting adherence to established policies, GO helps organizations avoid potential conflicts, errors, and mismanagement, ultimately safeguarding their financial stability, fostering customer satisfaction, and safeguarding their reputation in the competitive market.


General Order (GO) serves as a vital mechanism in the world of international trade and commerce, primarily catering to the proper governance and management of imported goods that fail to promptly clear through customs. The purpose of a General Order lies in relieving congestion at ports and ensuring efficient operation of customs processes, subsequently maintaining the seamless flow of trade across borders. When consignments do not meet the necessary legal requirements or when importers are unable to fulfill their obligations in terms of payment, documentation, or pickup, these shipments are placed under General Order, warranting their temporary relocation to assigned GO warehouses.

The usage of General Order not only helps manage port traffic and customs clearance, but also safeguards the interests of various stakeholders involved in international trade. For instance, it enables customs authorities to maintain accountability and ascertain revenue collections by keeping a close watch on shipments with pending duties or those held up due to non-compliance. Additionally, it allows shipping lines and freight-forwarding agents to release their equipment or containers, enabling them to continue their operations without unnecessary bottlenecks. The systematic relocation and storage of unclaimed or non-compliant cargo helps minimize the risk of pilferage, loss, or damage, providing a sense of security to importers, exporters, and warehouse operators. Consequently, a General Order serves as a valuable instrument in striking the delicate balance between preserving the efficiency of global trade systems and upholding the obligations and interests of all concerned parties.


1. International Trade: In the context of international trade, a General Order (GO) refers to a customs procedure where imported goods are stored in a bonded warehouse until the required duties and taxes are paid. For example, a clothing retailer imports garments from a manufacturer in China. When the shipment arrives at a U.S. port, it is placed under GO and stored in a bonded warehouse until the retailer submits customs declarations and pays the necessary duties and taxes.

2. Manufacturing Industry: A manufacturing company may use a General Order (GO) to communicate requirements for the creation of a specific product or component. For instance, an automotive manufacturer issues a GO to a supplier, specifying the details of a certain auto part, such as materials, dimensions, and quantity required. The GO serves as a clear communication tool to ensure that the final product meets the desired standards and requirements.

3. Construction Projects: In large construction projects, a General Order (GO) can be used to authorize and outline the planning, funding, and implementation of certain tasks. For example, a city government may issue a GO to a construction firm for the development of a new public transport facility. The GO would provide details of the project scope, timeline, budget, and expected outcomes. It would serve as a contractual agreement ensuring that both parties understand and adhere to the project specifications.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is General Order (GO) in finance and business terms?

General Order (GO) refers to a status assigned to imported goods that have not met the necessary legal requirements for entry into the destination country. These goods are held in a bonded warehouse until the required paperwork, taxes, and fees have been fulfilled.

Why are goods placed under General Order?

Goods are placed under General Order when the importer fails to provide proper documentation, pay the necessary duties and taxes, or any other legal requirements for the entry of goods within the specified timeframe, usually 15 days after their arrival in the country.

What happens to goods placed under General Order?

Goods under General Order are placed in a bonded warehouse until the importer completes the required paperwork and payments. If the importer fails to fulfill these requirements within a certain period, the goods can be confiscated and possibly auctioned off by the government.

What is a bonded warehouse?

A bonded warehouse is a secure storage facility where goods can be stored without payment of duties and taxes until they are either exported or finally released for domestic consumption. Bonded warehouses are under the supervision and control of the customs authority in the destination country.

Can goods under General Order status be released?

Yes, goods under General Order status can be released if the importer submits the necessary documents, pays the applicable fees, and fulfills all legal requirements within the specified time frame. Failure to do so may result in the goods being confiscated or auctioned.

How can I avoid having my goods placed under General Order?

To avoid having your goods placed under General Order, you should ensure that you have the proper documentation, pay the required duties and taxes, and fulfill any other legal requirements for importing goods into the destination country. It is also essential to track and monitor your shipment’s arrival date to avoid delays in the entry process.

Is there a penalty for having goods placed under General Order?

While there may not be a direct penalty for having your goods placed under General Order, the consequences can be significant. These may include additional fees for storage and handling at a bonded warehouse, legal fees, and potential loss of goods if they are confiscated or auctioned. Additionally, there could be damage to your business reputation if the issue is not resolved promptly.

Can I appeal the General Order decision?

If your goods have been placed under General Order and you believe this decision is in error, you can contact the customs authority in the destination country. They will provide guidance on the necessary steps to appeal the decision and, if successful, have your goods released from General Order status.

Related Finance Terms

  • Customs clearance
  • Freight forwarding
  • Import duty
  • Warehouse storage
  • Bonded goods

Sources for More Information

About Our Editorial Process

At Due, we are dedicated to providing simple money and retirement advice that can make a big impact in your life. Our team closely follows market shifts and deeply understands how to build REAL wealth. All of our articles undergo thorough editing and review by financial experts, ensuring you get reliable and credible money advice.

We partner with leading publications, such as Nasdaq, The Globe and Mail, Entrepreneur, and more, to provide insights on retirement, current markets, and more.

We also host a financial glossary of over 7000 money/investing terms to help you learn more about how to take control of your finances.

View our editorial process

About Our Journalists

Our journalists are not just trusted, certified financial advisers. They are experienced and leading influencers in the financial realm, trusted by millions to provide advice about money. We handpick the best of the best, so you get advice from real experts. Our goal is to educate and inform, NOT to be a ‘stock-picker’ or ‘market-caller.’ 

Why listen to what we have to say?

While Due does not know how to predict the market in the short-term, our team of experts DOES know how you can make smart financial decisions to plan for retirement in the long-term.

View our expert review board

About Due

Due makes it easier to retire on your terms. We give you a realistic view on exactly where you’re at financially so when you retire you know how much money you’ll get each month. Get started today.

Due Fact-Checking Standards and Processes

To ensure we’re putting out the highest content standards, we sought out the help of certified financial experts and accredited individuals to verify our advice. We also rely on them for the most up to date information and data to make sure our in-depth research has the facts right, for today… Not yesterday. Our financial expert review board allows our readers to not only trust the information they are reading but to act on it as well. Most of our authors are CFP (Certified Financial Planners) or CRPC (Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor) certified and all have college degrees. Learn more about annuities, retirement advice and take the correct steps towards financial freedom and knowing exactly where you stand today. Learn everything about our top-notch financial expert reviews below… Learn More