Thursday, July 18, 2024
shipping and freight resource services
HomeInformationNewsWarehouse Receipts gets its Model Law - UNCITRAL/UNIDROIT

Warehouse Receipts gets its Model Law – UNCITRAL/UNIDROIT

On 26th June 2024, the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) adopted the UNCITRAL/UNIDROIT Model Law on Warehouse Receipts (MLWR) and its Guide to Enactment..

This milestone was the result of a collaborative effort between UNCITRAL and the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT) and is seen as a significant step towards modernizing and harmonizing the legal framework for warehouse receipts..

What is a Warehouse Receipt and its benefits..??

UNIDROIT defines Warehouse Receipts as a document issued in paper or electronic form by a warehouse operator that states a commodity’s ownership and may be traded or used as collateral to obtain credit..

A supportive legal framework is widely regarded as a prerequisite for a well-functioning warehouse receipts system that can foster transactions and facilitate access to finance, especially in the agricultural sector and with particular importance for small entrepreneurs..

Benefits of a Well-Designed Warehouse Receipt System

A well-designed warehouse receipt system offers numerous benefits to all participants in the commodity market, including producers, warehouse operators, traders, and creditors..

One significant advantage is facilitating access to credit and reducing its cost by creating secure collateral..

An effective warehouse receipt system also enables smallholders to participate in commodity markets by consolidating their produce and selling it jointly further down the value chain..

Furthermore, incorporating new technologies stimulates and facilitates market transactions and international trade, allowing participants to access real-time inventory data, execute instant transactions, and reach a larger market..

Legal Framework and Compatibility

The Model Law provides a comprehensive legal framework that addresses the private law aspects of a warehouse receipt system.. It is designed for adoption by States seeking to reform their legislation in this domain..

A key feature of the Model Law is its compatibility with various legal and economic systems, ensuring it can be adapted to different jurisdictions.. This universal applicability is a hallmark of both UNCITRAL and UNIDROIT instruments, facilitating international acceptance and implementation..

Medium-Neutral and Technology-Neutral Provisions

A notable aspect of the Model Law is its provision for the issuance and transfer of both paper-based and electronic warehouse receipts on a medium-neutral and technology-neutral basis..

This flexibility allows for the integration of central registries, distributed ledgers, platforms, and other technologies for managing electronic warehouse receipts..

By accommodating various technologies, the Model Law ensures that it remains relevant and effective in a rapidly evolving digital landscape..

Guide to Enactment and Complementary Legislation

To support the implementation of the Model Law, UNIDROIT has prepared a comprehensive draft of the Guide to Enactment for the Model Law which includes detailed commentaries on the model provisions and offers guidance on the complementary legislation necessary for effective implementation..

The Guide to Enactment is an invaluable resource for States looking to adopt the Model Law, providing practical insights and recommendations..

Access to the Model Law and Additional Information

The text of the UNCITRAL/UNIDROIT Model Law on Warehouse Receipts, as adopted by the Commission, together with complementary information will be available for download on the UNIDROIT website ( and the UNCITRAL texts webpage ( It will also be included as an annex to the annual report of UNCITRAL..

The Role of UNCITRAL in International Trade Law

UNCITRAL plays a pivotal role as the core legal body of the United Nations system in the field of international trade law.. Its primary mandate is to remove legal obstacles to international trade by progressively modernizing and harmonizing trade law..

Sharing the information on the Model Law for Warehouse Receipts, Luca Castellani, MLWR adoption offers a real opportunity to transform the warehouse receipt business through fintech, thus providing access to finance to more business — especially micro, small and medium-sized enterprises — at lower cost.

The impact may be huge: food security is just the beginning. But this means a review of traditional trade finance business models to take full advantage of digitalization.

UNCITRAL prepares legal texts in several key areas, including international commercial dispute settlement, electronic commerce, insolvency, international payments, sale of goods, transport law, procurement, and infrastructure development..

Additionally, UNCITRAL provides technical assistance to Member States, helping them assess their law reform needs and draft the necessary legislation to implement UNCITRAL texts..


The adoption of the UNCITRAL/UNIDROIT Model Law on Warehouse Receipts represents a significant advancement in international trade law.. By providing a comprehensive, adaptable, and technology-neutral legal framework, the Model Law addresses the evolving needs of the commodity market..

Its implementation promises to enhance access to credit, stimulate private sector investment, and facilitate smallholder participation in commodity markets..

The Model Law’s development process and the accompanying Guide to Enactment ensure that it is a practical and valuable tool for States seeking to modernize their warehouse receipt systems..

Ultimately, this Model Law will contribute to the progressive modernization and harmonization of international trade law, fostering a more efficient and inclusive global market..

Liked the content..??

Sign up below to receive the best and most reliable industry content for free from THE Definitive Online Resource for Shipping and Freight..




Hariesh Manaadiar
Hariesh Manaadiar
I am Hariesh Manaadiar, the Founder of Shipping and Freight Resource.. I have been in the dynamic shipping and freight industry for over three decades and have worked in several sectors.. I share my experiences and knowledge of the industry through this blog for those looking for help in the industry.. Stay subscribed for more free useful content about shipping, freight, maritime, logistics, supply chain and trade..


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.



Sign up below to receive the best and most reliable industry content for free from THE Definitive Online Resource for Shipping and Freight..

FBX - Freight Indices