International Sale of Goods

Subject LAWS70069 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 7 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2016.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: The total class time is between 24 and 26 hours.
Total Time Commitment:

The pre-teaching period commences four weeks before the subject commencement date. From this time, students are expected to access and review the Reading Guide that will be available from the LMS subject page and the subject materials provided by the subject coordinator, which will be available from Melbourne Law School. Refer to the Reading Guide for confirmation of which resources need to be read and what other preparation is required before the teaching period commences.

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

Applicants without legal qualifications should note that subjects are offered in the discipline of law at an advanced graduate level. While every effort will be made to meet the needs of students trained in other fields, concessions will not be made in the general level of instruction or assessment. Most subjects assume the knowledge usually acquired in a degree in law (LLB, JD or equivalent). Applicants should note that admission to some subjects in the Melbourne Law Masters will be dependent upon the individual applicant’s educational background and professional experience.

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

The Melbourne Law Masters welcomes applications from students with disabilities. The inherent academic requirements for study in the Melbourne Law Masters are:

  • The ability to attend a minimum of 75% of classes and actively engage in the analysis and critique of complex materials and debate;
  • The ability to read, analyse and comprehend complex written legal materials and complex interdisciplinary materials;
  • The ability to clearly and independently communicate in writing a knowledge and application of legal principles and interdisciplinary materials and to critically evaluate these;
  • The ability to clearly and independently communicate orally a knowledge and application of legal principles and interdisciplinary materials and critically evaluate these;
  • The ability to work independently and as a part of a group;
  • The ability to present orally and in writing legal analysis to a professional standard.

Students who feel their disability will inhibit them from meeting these inherent academic requirements are encouraged to contact the Disability Liaison Unit:


For more information:

Phone: +61 3 8344 6190

Subject Overview:

This subject is at its core is an advanced common law treatment of international trade law dealing with the import and export of goods by sea. Apart from CIF, FOB and related matters, it deals with bankers’ letters of credit financing such sales. Approximately 20 per cent of the course is also dedicated to the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods 1980, with emphasis on the differences between this instrument and the common law approach. This subject deals with the international sale of goods, primarily with respect to the sale of commodities, where the interplay between sale as a commercial activity and sale as a speculative instrument can most acutely be observed. Uniformity is an important theme is this subject, whether it is based upon the choice of a standard form contract and the same applicable national law, or the uniformity that is manifest in the national law of the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods 1980.

Principal topics include:

  • The passing of title to, and risk in, the goods
  • Allocation of responsibility for arranging carriage and insurance
  • The relationship between the carriage and insurance contracts and the sale contract
  • Export and import licences
  • Bills of lading and the network of contracts that work to effect international sales
  • How and when payment is to be made for the goods
  • The International Chamber of Commerce Incoterms 2010
  • The application and content of the UN Convention on the International Sales of Goods (CISG)
  • Non-conformity of goods and the buyer’s remedies
  • Documentary letters of credit and documentary collection
  • Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits 2007 (UCP 600).
Learning Outcomes:

A student who has successfully completed this subject will:

  • Have an advanced understanding of issues that should be addressed in a contract for the international sale of goods
  • Be able critically to examine, analyse, interpret and assess the relevant law
  • Have an advanced and informed contextual understanding of international trading in commodities and a sophisticated appreciation of the subject
  • Have the communication skills to present complex legal information
  • Understand in a detailed and sophisticated way the importance of integrated contracts within a commercial network of contracts
  • Understand in an autonomous and critical way the letter of credit payment system
  • Have the cognitive and technical skills to understand the significance of harmonised and uniform law
  • Possess a deep awareness of the distinctive character of such law outside the identity of conventional national law.
  • Take-home examination (100%) (16-19 October)
  • 10,000 word research paper (100%) (2 December) on a topic approved by the subject coordinator
Prescribed Texts:

Core subject materials will be provided free of charge to all students. Some subjects require further texts to be purchased. Visit the Melbourne Law Masters website for more information about this subject.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Links to further information:

This subject has a quota of 30 students. Please refer to the website for further information about the management of subject quotas and waitlists.

Related Course(s): Graduate Diploma in International Economic Law
Graduate Diploma in International Law
Graduate Diploma in Legal Studies
Master of Commercial Law
Master of Laws
Master of Private Law
Master of Public and International Law

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