Tuesday, August 9, 2011


If you negotiate international contracts you or your department should have a copy of the latest version of INCOTERMS or as a minimum their wall chart of the different terms.

INCOTERMS is a publication of the International Chamber of Commerce that was started back in the 1930‘s and provides detailed information on the common delivery terms that may be used. They describe what the terms mean, the responsibilities of each party from the suppliers dock to the buyers dock for all the activities involved such as loading, transport, preparation of paperwork, export, import, customs clearance, payment of duties, insurance. They also describe the point at which the risk of loss for the shipment transfers from the supplier to the buyer for each of the different terms.

The website for the International Chamber of Commerce where you could order a copy of INCOTERMS or the quick reference wall chart is http://www.iccwbo.org/incoterms/

If you use an INCOTERM delivery term in you contract it is always best to refer to the specific revision as they are updated about every ten years. For example:
“The delivery term shall be Ex-Works (as defined in INCOTERMS 2010) Supplier’s Dock in Taipei, Taiwan”

In doing this you have defined the delivery term, the delivery point and the risks and responsibilities of the parties according to the INCOTERMS definition included in that 2010 version.

If the specific delivery term doesn't work you can always modify them by including changes.
“The delivery term shall be Ex-Works (as defined in INCOTERMS 2010 except as modified below) Supplier’s Dock in Taipei, Taiwan. The modifications to INCOTERMS 2010 shall be ......”