Since the publication of the first edition in 1936, the Incoterms® rules have established clear precedents for business operating within the rules-based international trade system. Despite economic, political and technological changes to our world over the past eight decades, the Incoterms® rules remain relevant to business, governments and individuals everywhere.
The Incoterms® rules are a collection of three letter acronyms that outline the responsibilities and duties of importers and exporters. Some of the most commonly used Incoterms® rules, like FCA (“Free Carrier”), DAP (“Delivered at Place”) and CIP (“Carriage and Insurance Paid To”), hold universal meaning for buyers and sellers around the world.
As with other standards, the Incoterms® rules have become so deeply embedded into the international trade system that we often take them for granted. In fact, for many, the Incoterms® rules represent more than just rules and regulations they are the language of trade. Without the Incoterms® rules, there would be further confusion between buyers and sellers at points of entry, as well as greater unpredictability surrounding the transport, collection and maintenance of goods.
Each day, millions of employees around the world use the Incoterms® rules to do their jobs. While the Incoterms® rules are essential for importers and exporters, they are just as important for those working in financial services, government and academia too. Whether you own a small business in Africa or work for a shipping company in Europe, the Incoterms® rules can influence your position and corresponding responsibilities.
In preparation for the release of Incoterms® 2020, ICC has launched “A Day in the Life of the Incoterms® rules” to tell the stories of Incoterms® rules users from around the world. Over the next few weeks, we will publish interviews with Incoterms® users from multinational corporations, micro-small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), importers, exporters, bankers, chambers of commerce, law firms and more. By presenting the perspective of users, ICC will demonstrate the daily importance of the Incoterms® rules, as well as their global reach.
Are you a user of the Incoterms® rules? Then we want to hear from you!