More than 100 Years of Experience

Waren-Verein’s Conditions and Arbitral Tribunal exist nearly as long as Waren-Verein itself – for more than 100 years. At those times Hamburg merchants dealing with colonial goods established an association to write down and develop trade usages and establish rules to settle disputes.

Recommended Arbitration Clause

The following contract has been concluded under the rules and conditions of the Waren-Verein der Hamburger Börse e.V., whose Arbitral Tribunal and experts shall be competent for final settlement of all and any dispute arising in connection with the present contract or with respect to its validity to the exclusion of the ordinary courts of law. The seat of the Arbitration shall be Hamburg. The rules of law applicable to the merits shall be German Law. The UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods shall not apply.

Conditions of Business

Waren-Verein-Conditions have been developed since 1900 and reflect the peculiarities and usages of international commodity trade. They are internationally accepted as basis of contracts in this trade as they evenly balance rights and obligations between contracting parties.

Revision of Conditions of Business

The Committee on Waren-Verein-Conditions revises the Conditions on a regular basis to ensure they meet developments in international trade. In 2019 the Conditions have been broadly revised. The General Assembly has decided to adopt these revisions on February 27, 2020 and they will apply to all contracts concluded as of April 8, 2020.

Conditions of Business (April 8, 2020)

Arbitration Rules

Advantages of Waren-Verein Arbitration

Arbitration is confidential: Oral hearings take place behind closed doors and arbitrators and parties generally speaking agree to treat them as confidential. This is different from oral hearings in national courts.

Solving disputes by commercial experts: It is parties choosing their arbitrator. The Arbitration Rules require the co-arbitrators to be merchants – irrespective of the particular sector. However it does of course make sense to choose arbitrators having expertise in the particular sector in dispute.

Enforcing results worldwide: Arbitral awards are nearly worldwide enforceable thanks to the New York Convention as of 1958. This is different from awards of national courts.

Support by Waren-Verein’s legal adviser: Merchant arbitrators are supported by Waren-Verein’s legal adviser. This is to make sure that the settlement does not only meet commercial requirements, but legal requirements as well.

Please keep in mind quality arbitration

If there is a dispute between customer and supplier and the dispute is about the quality of a sample or good, you have to go for quality arbitration first. A quality in dispute can only be proved by quality arbitration (expert opinion) according to Waren-Verein-Conditions.

Arbitration Rules

Rules for Experts

Dispute on Quality

Quality arbitration is an efficient instrument to settle disputes on quality of a sample or good or its market price as it leads to binding results. If the dispute is not settled by quality arbitration and is taken to the Arbitral Tribunal, the Arbitral Tribunal generally speaking is bound to the result of the quality arbitration (expert opinion).

Please Note

Waren-Verein-Conditions ask for an expert opinion to prove the bad quality of goods, in case it is disputed, and this expert opinion shall be made in accordance with Waren-Verein’s Rules for Experts only.

Choosing Experts

It is parties choosing their experts. The Rules for experts require the experts to be merchants – irrespective of the particular sector. However it does of course make sense to choose experts having expertise in the particular sector in dispute.

Rules for Experts (April 8, 2020)

Do you have any questions about the arbitral tribunal? Then please get in touch with your contact person at the Waren-Verein.

Claudia Toussaint, LL.M.
Advisor Arbitral Tribunal, Waren-Verein Conditions of Business, Customs Law

+49 (0) 40 374 719-18