Incoterms means ‘International Commercial Terms’. It is the official document
approved by the International Chamber of Commerce containing rules for the
interpretation of international trade terms. Reference to Incoterms 2010 in a contract,
even without incorporating the full wording text, bind the parties to their
respective obligations as defined in the specific term (i.e. CIF (cost, insurance, and
freight), FOB (Free on board), EXW (Ex works), etc.).26 The first set of international
rules for the interpretation of trade terms was published in 1936, Incoterms 1936 Amendments
and additions were later made in 1953, 1967, 1976, 1980,
1990, 2000, and 2010. The parties should carefully identify the year (Incoterms
2010) to avoid later disputes about which version should apply.
Incoterms, it has been said, is not a treaty or a convention but it is an open question
whether it can be considered as a well-known international use and custom
and therefore a compulsory source of law.27 The answer depends on the national
courts. The party arguing in its favour must prove the two elements of the use.
First, the frequent and repetitive incorporation of Incoterms in the contracts of
the specific trade and, second, a clear and relevant degree of acceptance by the