This LL.M. covers the legal aspects of international trade and commerce. It is exclusively focused on  international commercial law. From the laws regarding the sale and distribution of goods or services to payment and security mechanisms, the rules on the carriage of goods, insurance law and intellectual property rights, the master in international trade law covers it all! Because of its encompassing character this LL.M. provides you with a comprehensive overview of the legal aspects of international trade.

What aspects does the programme cover?

Company Law

The two main pillars of the Study Programme are 1. Company Law and 2. Commercial Law. The Company Law pillar focuses upon the main topics of corporate governance. Issues such as the functioning of the board of directors, shareholder rights and cross-border voting and some aspects of European labour law will be comprehensively discussed. Attention is also given to the EC-directives on the freedom of establishment, national and cross-border mergers, take over bids, representation, supra national companies and the Societas Europaea.

Commercial Law

The Commercial Law pillar consists of courses detailing the risks of international trade, how these risks can be allocated (e.g. by means of documents of title) and how they may be averted or minimized.
Its focus is the individual contracts on which the cooperation between the multitude of businesses involved in an international sale of goods transaction is based as well as the legal foundations of these transactions. Such contracts include contracts of insurance, financing and payment, transport, storage and logistics. The legal foundations upon which this contractual cooperation rests include rights of ownership, security rights in goods, rules on liability, intellectual property rights and, due to the international nature of the dealings, guidelines as to which law applies and which court may be addressed.

How is the study programme structured?

At the beginning of the programme you receive an introduction into one of the subjects of the programme. You also learn how to do independent legal research and how to report your findings through presentations and papers during a 15 ECTS Legal Research and Writing Skills Course. Attendance of the meetings is mandatory and successful completion of this course is a precondition to being admitted to the Master Thesis.

The second block is composed of two 5 ECTS courses, i.e. Commercial Law and International Corporate Governance. The third block is composed of one 10 ECTS course, Company Law and Restructuring. The fourth block includes one 5 ECTS course, Carriage of Goods and one 5 ECTS elective. The fifth and last block consists of a Master Thesis and one 5 ECTS course, Intellectual Property Rights.

Does the programme have a special focus?

The Master Commercial Law distinguishes itself from other LL.M. programmes in Business law by putting an emphasis on private legal relationships, the balance between commercial law, corporate law and procedural law courses. Based in the port of Rotterdam, this programme educates legal professionals that are to become well versed in both Commercial and Company Law. Due to its position in the centre of a large trade hub the programme is able to offer students many opportunities for exploration of trade in practice by combining the theory that is taught with on-site workshops.


The 2016-2017 programme consists of seven courses and a Master Thesis divided over five terms.



block 1

block 2

block 3

block 4

block 5 

RB39Research & Writing Skills Commercial and Company Law15 ects    
RB20Commercial Law 5 ects   
RB19International Corporate Governance 5 ects   
RB38Company Law and Restructuring  10 ects  
RB05Carriage of Goods   5 ects 
 Elective   5 ects 
RB04Intellectual Property Rights    5 ects
RS114Master Thesis    10 ects

More information about the courses can be found in the Course Guide.


  • Economic Analysis of European Integration (RB36)
  • European Private International Law (RB22)
  • EU Competition law (RM73)
  • International Economic Law (RM68)
  • International Maritime Law Arbitration Moot (RB68)
  • Law of the Ship (RB12)
  • Maritime Casualties (RB13)

Click here for more information about the courses.

  • The programmes are fixed with compulsory and optional courses spread over four blocks. These optional courses can be chosen from the variety of courses offered in the Erasmus LL.M. Programme of your preference. Subject to the approval of the programme director, you may also take additional courses that interest you, alongside the LL.M. Programme.

  • Both the Postgraduate Master in Arbitration and Business Law as well as International and European Public Law a can be followed on a part-time basis, i.e. one year of full-time study may be spread over two years. In general, lectures will take place during the day.

    In practice, your presence at the university will be required for 2/3 courses (each lasting 2/3 hours) per week. For the first and second year you are free to choose a schedule that is convenient for you. For additional advice, you may consult the assigned programme director in advance.

  • As a rule, exemptions will not be possible. Courses previously taken at Erasmus School of Law, which are part of our Commercial Law and International and European Public Law programme may be used towards completing your degree in these fields.

    Please consult the examination committee about this.

  • No, that is not possible.

  • It is not possible to apply for more LL.M. programmes for the same academic year.

  • In Holland a university bachelor programme (LLB), does not give access to the legal profession. Students should also have a Master (LLM) in order to be able to become a lawyer etc.

    Commercial Law and International and European Public Law are both LL.M. programmes on Master's level, i.e. this is the first type of Master's programmes that Dutch students can join and which they need to get access to the judicial profession.

    Most foreign Bachelor Law degrees do give access to the judicial profession. Business, Corporate and Maritime is a Master's programme on postgraduate level, meaning that students joining this Master should already have access to the judicial profession based on their LL.B.

  • As a participant in the Master's in International and European Public Law and Commercial law you will have several options to choose from.

    As a participant in the Master's in International and European Public Law, you can specialise in 4 directions.

    As a participant in Commercial law, you will be able to specialise in the fields of Commercial and Company law or Maritime and Transport Law.