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International Commercial Law


Admission requirements



This English taught course offers a firm introduction to the core legal concepts of international trade and commerce and how they interact. The course deals with such topics as international sales, agency, carriage, insurance, trade financing, payment instruments and related topics. The lectures are aimed at giving a clear outline of the topic under discussion, enabling students to engage with the reading material and develop a structured view of private law doctrines of commerce and trade. We also practice with cases to prepare for the final exam and we offer a primer in contract drafting issues. The course devotes special attention to legal vocabulary, so students will feel slightly less uncomfortable with (the impossible task of) transposing legal constructs from one jurisdiction into another. By necessity, the course also takes a comparative legal perspective on commercial law. For that reason, we look at aspects of UK common law, USA law, German and French law, to the extent relevant for the subjects under discussion.

Course objectives

Achievement levels
Upon completion of the course, you are able to state, identify and apply, the relevant principles, rules and case law to a given case hypothetical, as well as offer a discussion and reasoned critique concerning the subjects such as:

  • International commercial sales and the relevant uniform rules and rules of private international law

  • The law concerning agency, bailment and leasing

  • The law concerning the position of third parties in contract

  • The main principles of contracts for carriage by sea

  • The main principles of commercial insurance contract law

  • The main principles of financing of trade and commerce, including security interests, retention of title and receivables financing


The timetable of this course can be found in uSis.

Mode of instruction

This course consists of 10 lectures with theoretical instruction and case-based teaching.

Assessment method

Written exam: 3 hours. The assessment method will be practiced during the lectures.

Regulation retake passed exams
In this course it is possible to retake an exam that has been passed (cf. art. and further of the Course and Examination Regulations), on the condition that this course is included in the compulsory components of the degree program. Students who have passed the exam may retake the final written assessment (test) of the course if they meet certain requirements. To retake a passed exam, students need to ask the Student Administration Office (OIC) for permission. For more information, go to 'course and exam enrollment' > 'permission for retaking a passed exam' on the student website.

Reading list

To be announced on Brightspace.


Students have to register for exams through uSis. A block of seats will be reserved for exchange students and will be registered through the international office.


  • Institute: Privaatrecht

  • Department: Private Law

  • Room number secretary: B2.43

  • Opening hours: 09.00-13.30

  • Telephone number secretary: +31 (0) 71 – 527 7381

  • Email: