The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has published the Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits (UCP 600) as a set of guidelines for banks and businesses engaged in international trade. Some of the key provisions of UCP 600 include:
- General provisions: The UCP 600 outlines the general principles that govern the use of documentary credits in international trade, including the obligation of banks to act in accordance with the terms and conditions of the credit, and the requirement that all documents be presented within a specified time frame.
- Obligations and liabilities: The UCP 600 sets out the obligations and liabilities of the various parties involved in a documentary credit transaction, including the buyer, seller, issuing bank, and advising bank.
- Examination of documents: The UCP 600 provides guidelines for the examination of documents by banks, including the requirement that all documents be examined within a reasonable time frame, and that banks may only reject documents that do not comply with the terms and conditions of the credit.
- Discrepancies and waivers: The UCP 600 provides guidelines for dealing with discrepancies in documents, including the requirement that banks must notify the buyer and seller of any discrepancies, and the procedures for obtaining waivers or amendments to the credit.
- Transferable credits: The UCP 600 outlines the rules and procedures for transferring a documentary credit to a third party.
- Confirmation: The UCP 600 provides guidelines for confirming banks, including the requirements for a confirming bank to undertake to pay, accept or negotiate documents under the credit.
- Electronic documents: The UCP 600 recognizes the use of electronic documents in documentary credit transactions and sets out guidelines for the use of electronic documents, including the requirements for electronic signatures and the use of secure messaging systems.
- Availability of funds: The UCP 600 sets out the rules and procedures for the availability of funds under a documentary credit, including the requirement that banks may only pay or negotiate documents if funds are available.