Uniform customs and practice

Rules and regulations that govern international trade

About Uniform Customs and Practice

  • The Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits (also known as UCP) is a set of rules issued by the ICC. The current version is the 2007 revision, and published by the ICC in their publication number 600. Supplement for electronic presentations (eUCP) Ver 2.0.

The UCP clearly defines the parties to the letter of credit, and details their roles and responsibilities:

  • Applicant (usually the importer)
  • Beneficiary (usually the exporter)
  • Issuing Bank (issued at the request of the Applicant)
  • Advising Bank (advises the letter of credit at the request of the Issuing Bank)

The rules are binding on all parties unless they have been expressly modified or excluded by the wording of the issued letter of credit.

  • The ICC has issued a similar set of rules and regulations that applies to Documentary Collections - Uniform Rules for Collections (URC). The current version is the 1995 revision, and published by the ICC in their publication number 522. Supplement for electronic presentations (eURC) Ver 1.0.

It is well worth your while to get acquainted with the UCP and URC, indeed, the work of the ICC as a whole: there is a considerable amount of legal terminology to understand, and it will help you if you clearly understand your rights in case of arbitration and dispute resolution. 

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