Programme overview

International Business Law

What aspects does the programme cover?

Commercial contracts and trade financing

After the Research & Writing Skills module, you will study commercial contracts. The start of commercial transactions is often a contract for the purchase of goods or services, but there are also important ancillary contracts, e.g. commercial agency contracts, distribution agreements, licensing or franchising agreements, etc. These agreements are studied in the Commercial Contracts course. The goods or services purchased obviously also need to be paid. In an international setting, payment and security for payment are not always simple. The Trade Finance Law course looks into the legal aspects of these issues.

Risks, insurance, transportation and intellectual property rights

Parties involved in business transactions will often enter into insurance contracts in order to cover their risks and liability. You will learn how these risks can be allocated and how they may be averted or minimized for example through insurance contracts. Also, purchased goods usually need to be transported. You will study contracts of carriage, transport documents and related documents, and the liabilities of the carrier and the shipper. Finally, manufacturers need to protect their products against unauthorized copying. In the Intellectual Property Rights course you will learn to understand both the business rationale and the legal structure of IPR protection. You will also become familiar with the practical implications (and possibilities) of the law.

Does the programme have a particular focus? 

The Master International Business Law distinguishes itself from other LL.M. programmes in business or trade law by its exclusive focus on the commercial law perspective. The courses deal with the way the parties themselves structure their commercial interactions. Company law, regulatory- and public law aspects are left aside.

Throughout the master programme aspects of international trade law are considered from a comparative law perspective. Particular attention is paid to differences in approach and outcome between civil law jurisdictions and common law jurisdictions and by reference to the relevant standards in international trade law.

Based in the port of Rotterdam, this programme educates legal professionals that are to become well versed in international trade 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. 

Within a university teaching and research are combined. At the master level you will be brought into closer contact with this research. Ultimately, you will have to conduct scholarly research yourself (in your master's thesis). Both for research and in legal practice, certain academic and practical skills are indispensable.

This course starts with the study of the (international) contract of sale, as a sale of goods or services is the starting point of most business transactions. The rules and regulations regarding international sales, such as the Vienna Convention (CISG Convention) and the INCO Terms, are looked into. 

This course looks at commercial and business insurance law from a comparative perspective. EU law, civil law and common law solutions are compared and analysed.

This course looks at (international) payment mechanisms between the parties, including electronic fund transfers (EFT) and electronic currencies, at payment mechanisms involving third parties, such as bills of exchange, documentary collection, documentary credit, etc., and at security mechanisms such as liens and pledges, bank guarantees, standby letters of credit, etc.

The course consists of two parts. The first part (70%), is based upon a theme-by-theme analysis of carriage contract, where the various unimodal carriage conventions (Hague-Visby Rules, Hamburg Rules, CMR, CMNI, COTIF-CIM, and Montreal) are compared and contrasted to provide a deeper insight in the various subjects at hand. The second part (30%) consists of a study of capita selecta of time and voyage charter parties.

To enrol for the course Trademark Law it is required to have a grade higher than 7 for Intellectual Property Law.

Erasmus Student Network Opens external(ESN) is a non-profit international student organization. Their mission is to represent international students, thus provide opportunities for cultural understanding and self-development under the principle of Students Helping Students.
Their main focus is placed on current exchange students. They offer help in the academic, social and practical integration process. This is mainly done through activities in the local sections, which include cultural and social events such as trips to various places within the country, film nights, language projects, international food festivals and last, but not least, parties. In addition to that, many sections have introduced mentor systems, which help the international students mainly in academic and practical integration.

The Trade & Transport Law Association (TTLA) aims to involve internationally oriented students interested in the field of trade and transport. By visiting a broad spectrum of firms and companies engaged in this field they introduce students and practitioners to each other. Additionally, they offer a broad variety of social events in order to get acquainted with others that share your passion for this field of law! 

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