The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) World Chambers Federation has launched a revised version of its International Certificate of Origin (CO) Guidelines that include advice on certificates used in many letter of credit (L/C) transactions.

The new guidelines aim to provide chambers of commerce and exporters with updates on new processes, including digitalisation of the CO process.

Preferential and non-preferential

The latest edition of the CO Guidelines elaborates on the differences between both preferential and non-preferential certificates of origin.

It focuses on non-preferential rules of origin required for payment mechanisms such as L/Cs for traded goods, and measures related to trade policies like applications for most-favoured nation status.

Preferential rules of origin meanwhile determine whether goods or services are eligible for preferential treatment under free trade agreements.


Since 1953, the ICC has consistently advocated for a common definition to determine the origin of manufactured goods to improve trade efficiency, protect intellectual property and ensure product safety.

The first edition of the CO Guidelines was published in 2006.

This article represents the views of the author and not necessarily those of the ICC or Coastline Solutions.