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English for Business Communication. DLVTC XU MEIRONG. English for Business Communication. Third Edition. Xu Meirong from Department of Int’l Business Communication of Dalian Vocational & Technical Collage. Learning Objectives. Be able to write a letter of counteroffer

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xu meirong from department of int l business communication of dalian vocational technical collage

English for Business Communication

Third Edition

Xu Meirong

from Department of Int’l Business Communication of

Dalian Vocational & Technical Collage

learning objectives
Learning Objectives
  • Be able to write a letter of counteroffer
  • Be able to write letters of declining offers/ counteroffers
  • Be able to write letters of declining orders

Main & Difficult Points

  • Counter proposals
  • Counteroffers
  • Firm counteroffers
  • Non-firm counteroffers
  • Counter counteroffers
  • Replies to the enquiries
key words expressions
Key Words & Expressions
  • Counter-offer on the usual terms be on the high side regret be in line with reduce reduction turn down the prevailing market level
  • heavy demand heavy bookings
  • heavy commitments repeat order duplicate order shortage of stock
key words expressions1
Key Words & Expressions

⊙Identifying the reference of your letter

  • We thank you for your offer dated June 10, offering us 1000 m/t walnuts.
  • We acknowledge receipt of your letter of May 5 offering us the captioned goods at US$35.00 per piece CFR Vancouver on the usual terms.
key words expressions2
Key Words & Expressions

⊙Stating the reasons for expressing regret at inability to accept the offers/ orders

  • a. Much to our regret, as your offer is out of line with the market level, it is difficult for us to accept it.
  • b. We regret to say that we cannot accept your offer, as your price is unworkable.
  • c. We would much more appreciate it if there is a discount.
  • d. We find the rice you quoted is much higher than other suppliers’ of the similar products. Could you please lower it down to …?
key words expressions3
Key Words & Expressions

⊙ Making a counteroffer

  • a. To step up the trade, we counteroffer as follows, subject to your reply reaching us before this weekend.
  • b. In view of the above, we would counteroffer in your interest, that at US$26.00 per piece CFR Vancouver on the usual terms.
task 1
Task 1
  • Warming-up Discussion
  • You (Fashion Trading Company in U.K.) have received a firm offer from the seller (China National Garments Imp. & Exp. Corporation) . You find the offer unworkable. How will you reply to them?
writing steps for reference
Writing Steps for reference
  • thank the seller for his offer
  • stating the reason for declining the offer
  • make a counteroffer
  • Endings
language points
Language Points
  • on the usual terms 按照惯常条款
  • under the usual terms 按照惯常条款
  • according to the usual terms 按照惯常条款
  • in reply to ph. 现答复;兹复
  • in response to
  • in answer to
  • 现答复你方本月26日来函,向你们报实盘如下。

In reply to your letter of 26th of this month, we are making you the following firm offer.

This is in response to your letter of 26th of this month. We are making you the following firm offer.

end-users 最终用户,用户(指以使用或消费为目的的消费者)

  • regret vt. 抱歉, 遗憾
  • 抱歉无法按你方16日信中所提价格供货。

We regret our inability to supply the goods at the price indicated in your letter of 16.

language points1

Language Points

  • We very much regret to say that the goods supplied are not up to the expectations.


  • 由于原材料价格上涨,抱歉无法按原价格接受你方订单。

We regret that we can’t accept your order at the original price owing to the rise in the price of raw materials.

  • find your price too high 认为你方价格偏高
  • Different Expressions
  • find our prices too low 认为我方价格偏低
  • find our prices reasonable 认为我方价格合
  • find our prices competitive 认为我方价格具有竞争性
  • find our prices in line with the market 认为我方价格与市价一致
  • find our prices workable 认为我方价格可行
  • find our prices acceptable 认为我方价格可接受
language points2
Language Points
  • out of line with 与…不一致
  • in line with 与…一致
  • 你方的价格与现行的市场价格完全不一致。

Your price is entirely out line with the price ruling in the present market.

  • 你方所询购的货物超出我们的经营范围。

The goods you enquired is out of line with the scope of business activities.


Your price is quite in line, but the time of delivery is too distant.

  • the prevailing market 现行市场;现行行市
  • Similar Expressions:
  • the present market
  • the current market
  • the ruling market

Language Points

  • Useful expressions on Prices:
  • the present price 现行的价格
  • the ruling price 现行的价格
  • the going price 现行的价格
  • the prevailing price 现行的价格
  • the current price 现行的价格
  • the prevalent price 现行的价格
  • the Indian origin 产地
  • country of origin 生产国别;原产地
  • Certificate of origin 原产地证明
  • What is the place of origin??


language points3

Language Points

  • indicate v. 表示;说明;
  • indication n. 概念;迹象;示意;征兆


Please make us a firm offer, indicating the earliest delivery date.

  • 各种迹象表明价格将上涨。

There is every indication that the price will rise.

  • Please let us have your indication of price for the captioned goods.



Information indicates a further decline in the wool market.

language points4
Language Points
  • slightly adv. 略微;稍稍;稍微


The patient is slightly better.

11.the difference in (price) (价格方面)的差别


The difference in quality is quite clear.

language points5

Language Points

  • such being the case (in this case) 情况就是这样 ,鉴于这种情况
  • step up ph. 促进;加速
  • 我们竭尽全力加速生产以满足市场上大量需求。

We are doing utmost to step up production to meet the heavy demand.

  • in view of ph. 鉴于
  • Similar Expressions
  • considering
  • 只是鉴于我们之间长期的业务关系才给你方特别折扣。

It is only in view of our long-standing business relations that we offer you this special discount.

  • 鉴于情况特殊,我们同意接受你方的要求。

Considering the unusual circumstances,we agree to accept your requirements.

language points6

Language Points

  • decline vt. 拒绝;谢绝(用于拒绝,该词要比reject和refuse委婉);vi. 下降;

We regret to learn that our offer has been declined by your end-users.

  • As your prices are too high to meet competition, we have to decline your offer with regret.



  • The market price of color TV is on the decline.

彩色电视机的市价正在跌落 。

  • at your earliest convenience ph. 尽早的;早日的;立即
  • Similar Expressions
  • before long
  • by (on,at) the earliest opportunity
  • without (any ) delay
  • with the least possible delay
  • at an early date
  • at an early moment
  • as soon as possible
  • by return
chinese version of the letter
Chinese version of the letter



感谢贵公司2月20日来函,按惯常条款向我方报盘3000 打上述货物,每件45.00英镑CIF伦敦价。







task 2
Task 2
  • Warming-up Discussion
  • You are the seller (China National Garments Imp. & Exp. Corporation), and have received a counteroffer from the buyer (Fashion Trading Company in U.K.). You find their counteroffer out of line with the prevailing market level. How will you reply to them?
writing steps for reference1
Writing Steps for reference
  • 1.acknowledging receipt of the counteroffer
  • 2.stating the reason for declining the counteroffer
  • 3.making a counter counter-offer
  • 4.Endings
language points7

Language Points

  • the subject material标题项下的货物
  • the captioned goods
  • the subject material
  • be found (to be ) on the high side (价格)偏高
  • be on the high side
  • be too high
  • be a little high
  • be rather stiff
  • be prohibitive
  • Make comparisons
  • We note from your letter of 10 Oct. that the price for the subject article is found to be on the high side
  • Thank you for your letter of 10 Oct., from which we note that the price for the subject article is found to be on the high side
language points8
Language Points
  • be regretful that 令人感到遗憾的;抱歉的(多用于婉言拒绝)
  • We are regretful that we are unable to reduce our price to the level you indicated .


  • It is regretful to learn that the business has fallen through.


  • while conj. 然而;但是(形成鲜明的对比)
  • level n. 水平;(商业英语中引申为价格)
  • at one’s level 按某人的价格
  • 我们不能按你方价格达成交易。

We cannot close business at your level.

  • 如果你方能降价则交易成交有望。

Business is possible if you reduce your level.

  • Your price is not on a level with the current market.


language points9
Language Points
  • upward tendency 上升趋势
  • downward tendency 下降趋势
  • firm with an upward tendency (行市)坚挺且有上升趋势
  • in one’s interest ph. 为某人利益着想
  • take (full) advantage of sth. (趁机)利用(别人的缺点,弱点)
  • Make comparisons
  • 与make useful of 的区别:前者具有占人便宜之嫌
  • I can’t take advantage of your good nature.


  • 沾了好天气光,打了场网球。

We took advantage of the fine weather to play tennis.

language points10

Language Points

  • You must ship the goods in time to arrive here before the lapse of the license.


  • 很遗憾,我们的报盘在失效前未被接受。

We regret to say our offer has lapsed unaccepted.

10. lapse n. v. 失效

11.likelihood n. 可能性

  • 价格没有下降的可能。

There is no likelihood of the price going down.

  • 一旦本报盘失效,货物不被卖出的可能性很小。

There is little likelihood of the goods remaining unsold once this particular offer has lapsed.

chinese version of the letter1
Chinese version of the letter


从你方2 月23日来函中得知,我方对标题项下货物的报价被认为是偏高的。




task 3
Task 3
  • Warming-up Discussion
  • Generally speaking, an order should be acknowledged immediately if it cannot be fulfilled straight away. Now, you are the seller (China National Garments Imp. & Exp. Corporation), and have received a repeat order from your old client. Due to the shortage of stocks, you cannot meet the requirements of the buyer. What will you say to them?
writing steps for reference2
Writing Steps for reference
  • 1.acknowledging receipt of the order
  • 2.stating the reason for declining the order
  • 3.offering a substitute
  • 4.Endings
language points11

Language Points

  • shortage of stock 库存短缺
  • undertake v 承担;答应
  • 我们决不承担没有把握的事。

much to one’s regret 遗憾;令人遗憾

We will not undertake to do anything without being sure that we can do it.

  • 他答应承担贸易代表团的领队。

He undertook the leadership of the trade delegation.


Language Points

  • As this is an order of substantial one, we cannot undertake to complete the manufacture of the order in three week’s time.


  • on account of 由于;因为
  • Similar Expressions
  • due to
  • because of
  • owing to
language points12

Language Points

  • 由于你方未能在规定的时间内装运货物,我们只好撤销订单。

We have to cancel the order on account of your failure to ship the goods within the specified time.

  • On account of lack of direct steamer, please allow transshipment in your L/C.


  • 由于品味不同,您的设计款式不适合此地市场。

On account of difference in taste, your designs do not suit this market.


Language Points

  • uncertainty n 变化;不肯定
  • In view of the uncertainty of the price movement, we deem it advisable to withhold offering.


  • revert v 重提;复原
  • 一旦能向你方报实盘,我们将与你重谈此事。

We will revert to this matter as soon as we are in a position to make you a firm offer.

language points13

Language Points

  • We have taken due note of your requirements for plumbing and heating supplies, but regret being unable to supply at present. We will certainly revert to this as soon as our supply becomes available.


language points14

Language Points

  • hesitate v 犹豫;踌躇
  • hesitate to do sth 对做某事犹豫不决
  • hesitate about doing sth 对做某事犹豫不决
  • hesitate in speaking 说话吞吞吐吐
  • do not hesitate to do sth 务请…
  • feel free to do sth 不犹豫做某事

come into stock 有库存;有货

  • 倘若你方有意询购其它货物,请具体告知,切勿犹豫。
language points15

Language Points

If you want to buy some other goods, please do not hesitate to let us know your specific requirements.

  • If you should require any other metallic foils, please feel free to send us your detailed requirements.


rely on ph 依靠;信赖

  • rely upon
  • 请放心我们定会与你方密切合作。

You may rely on it that we will cooperate with you closely.

language points16
Language Points

10. substitute n. 替代品,代替物

We will send the substitute for the wrongly delivered goods.

11.substitute v.代替,替换

Substitute A for/with B 用A 代替 B

If the goods required is out of stock, please substitute it for a similar one.

language points17
Language Points
  • Your turn


Enclosed is an amended contract in substitution for the previous one.


We agree to substitute plastic for wood.

chinese version of the letter2

Chinese version of the letter






language points18
Language Points
  • turn down ph.拒绝;摒弃
  • Difference between these three words:
  • to decline 婉言拒绝
  • to refuse 拒绝;回绝
  • to reject (义正词严地)拒绝
  • conclude v. 达成;得出结论
  • to conclude a transaction 达成交易
  • to come to terms 达成交易
  • to close a bargain 达成交易
  • to close a deal 达成交易
  • to put the deal through 达成交易

Language Points

  • 如果你方愿意减价,比如说5%,我们很可能达成交易。

Should you be prepared to reduce your price by, say 5%, we might come to terms with you.

  • persuade v. 说服;劝说


We regret we have not been able to persuade them to accept your offer.

  • We believe we can persuade our users to divert their purchase to you.


language points19
Language Points
  • approach v.与…接洽


Please approach our agent at your end directly.

  • 曾有几家买主与我接洽索要花生的供货。

Several buyers have approached us for the supply of peanuts.

  • They have approached that factory several times for water pollution.


language points20
Language Points
  • finalize v. 把…最后定下来(指交易搞定)
  • be in receipt of 收到
  • upon receipt of 一收到…就…
  • on receipt of 一收到…就…
  • after receipt of 收到后…
  • protracted adj. 拖延的;延长的;持久的
  • receipt n 收到;收据

Language Points

  • sales contract 销售合同
  • sales confirmation 销售确认书
  • purchase contract 购货合同
  • purchase confirmation 购货确认书
chinese version of the letter3
Chinese version of the letter







Language Points

1. disappoint v.使失望

△be disappointed at hearing that 听到…感到失望

△be disappointed in sb / sth对某人(某事)失望

△be disappointed of one’s purpose / hopes没有达到目的 (希望)

2. much as ph.虽然很…

Much as we would like to come to terms with you,we cannot entertain your counteroffer



Language Points

3.the best we can do我们至多所能做的;我们能够做得最好的


△the further we can go

△all we can do

当买方对卖方说the best we can do往往指把价格稍提高一点;反之,当卖方对买方说the best we can do则指将价格稍降低一点。当然,除了指价格外,the best we can do还可以指其它的交易条款,如支付条件、交货期、装运条件等。


Language Points

4.see one’s way clear to do sth.设法做…;有可能做…

△see one’s way clear to doing sth.设法做…;

She didn’t see her way clear to lending me the money I needed.


We shall see our way clear to advance your shipment from June 15 to May 30.


We cannot see our way clear to increase the quantity.



Language Points

5.a flood of orders 大量订单

△a crowd of orders大量订单

△a large number of 一大批

6.sources 来源

We used to import the subject article from other sources.



Language Points

7. direct one’s attention to 使某人注意力集中在;使某人注意

△invite one’s attention to sth./ the fact that

△call one’s attention to sth./ the fact that

△draw one’s attention to sth./ the fact that

△direct one’s attention to sth./ the fact that

△attract one’s attention to sth./ the fact that

△arrest one’d attention to sth./ the fact that

△bring one’s attention to sth./ the fact that提请注意某事

We would like to call your attention to the validity of the L/C.



Language Points

8. convince v 使确信;使信服;深信;确信

He instantly convinced himself that reading was a pleasure.


We are now convinced of the truth of the report.


Who is going to convince him?



Language Points

9. take sth. into consideration 考虑到;顾及

Taking into consideration the transportation conditions at your end, we have especially reinforced our packing so as to minimize the extent of any possible damage to the goods.


The documents produced by you to support the claim for compensation are insufficient, therefore, we cannot take your claim into consideration.



Language Points

We hope that you will take your commercial reputation into consideration in all seriousness and open the L/C at once, otherwise, you will be responsible for all the losses arising therefrom.


10.come to terms达成交易


Chinese version of the letter







Language Points

1.duplicate order 重复订单:除交货期不同于原订单外,其它交易条款与原订单完全一致

2.due to 由于;因为

The negotiation is due to last for a week.


I am due to promotion to a higher grade in September.



Language Points

3.keep sth before sb 记住某事

  • keep your inquiry in our mind记住你的询盘

keep your inquiry on file for future reference记住你的询盘待有机会再办

We will keep in mind your requirement for walnutmeat and shall contact you once it is available.



Chinese version of the letter








I. Translate the following phrases:


counter counteroffer


on the usual terms


the ruling price




be on the high side


upward tendency


a flood of orders




owing to heavy bookings


take advantage of upward tendency


duplicate orders


Uncertainty of raw materials



II. Translate the following into English:

  • 你方还盘与现行市场价不符。

Your counteroffer is not in line with the prevailing market.

  • 很遗憾,我们的价格与你方还盘之间的差距太大。

We are sorry the difference between our price and your counteroffer is too wide.

  • 很遗憾我们不能把价格降到你方所表示的水平。

We very much regret that we cannot reduce our price to the level you indicated.



  • 由于原材料短缺,制造商不能接受任何新的订单。

Owing to the shortage of raw materials, the manufacturer can’t accept any new orders.

  • 由于大量承约,我们不能接受新订单,但是一旦新货源到来,我们将随即去电与你方联系不误。

Owing to heavy commitments, we regret that we cannot entertain any fresh orders for the time being, but we will contact you by cable as soon as the new supplies come.



  • 目前我们暂不能给你们报盘,但将记住你方的询价。

We cannot offer you at present, but we will keep your enquiry before us.

  • 报给你方的价格是很实际的。很抱歉不能接受你方的还盘。

The price we quoted is quite realistic. And we regret that your counteroffer is unacceptable to us.



  • 我们的报价相当合理,(这)已为你地其他客户所接受。

The price we quoted is quite reasonable, which has been accepted by the other buyers at your end.


You must reduce your price by 2% otherwise business is impossible.

  • 请随时告知你处市场的供货情况。

Please keep us informed of the supply position in your place.



III. Filling the missing words :

  • As the market is, your price is on theside.




  • We from your letter of May 15 that you arethe _______for green tea.




  • We cannotclear to reduce the price to the level you .







  • We hope to business at something our level.
  • You assured that the goods under Sales Contract No.9898 will be shipped .







  • Since your price is with the prevailing market, it is not for the buyers at our to accept.






  • While we appreciate your intention, we regret that we entertain any fresh orders.


  • As soon as we are a to make an for black tea, we shall you by cable.





  • We are enclosing a of our new products for your .



  • When you are in need of further quantities, please free to communicate with us.




Dear Sirs,

Thank you for your offer of Dec, 22 and your latest catalogue.

We appreciate the quality and design of your shirts, but unfortunately your price is nearly 20% higher than the other suppliers in our market. To accept your offer would leave us little profit on our sales since the difficult economic climate.

Therefore, we would suggest that you could make a reduction in your price, say, 15% and grant us 3% discount.

We hope our counter-suggestion will meet with your approval.

Yours faithfully,

  • Dear Sirs,
  • We have received your counteroffer of Dec. 23 and have had our careful attention.
  • To be frank, we should like to grant your request to cut our price by 15%. However, owing to the recent rise in the cost of raw materials, it is impossible for us to reduce the price by 15% without lowering the quality.
  • Considering this is the very first transaction between us. We are willing to allow you 3% discount.
  • This is the best we can do. As we have received a large orders from other sources, as well as the low stock and increasing demand.
  • Your early acceptance is absolutely essential.
  • Yours faithfully,