ICC (International Chamber of Commerce) is the voice of world business championing the global economy as a force for economic growth, job creation and prosperity. Because national economies are now so closely interwoven, government decisions have far stronger international reper-cussions than in the past. ICC - the world''s only truly global business organization responds by being more assertive in expressing business views. ICC activities cover a broad spectrum, from arbitration and dispute resolution to making the case for open trade and the market economy system, business self-regulation, fighting corruption or combating commercial crime. ICC has direct access to national governments all over the world through its national committees. The organization''s Paris-based international secretariat feeds business views into intergovernmental organizations on issues that directly affect business operations.
Setting rules and standards Arbitration under the rules of the ICC International Court of Arbitration is on the increase. Since 1999, the Court has received new cases at a rate of more than 500 a year. ICC''s Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits (UCP 500) are the rules that banks apply to finance billions of dollars worth of world trade every year. ICC Incoterms are standard international trade definitions used every day in countless thousands of contracts. ICC model contracts make life easier for small companies that cannot afford big legal departments. ICC is a pioneer in business self-regulation of e-commerce. ICC codes on advertising and marketing are frequently reflected in national legislation and the codes of professional associations.
Promoting growth and prosperity ICC supports government efforts to make a success of the Doha trade round. ICC provides world business recommendations to the World Trade Organization. ICC speaks for world business when governments take up such issues as intellectual property rights, transport policy, trade law or the environment. Signed articles by ICC leaders in major newspapers and radio and TV interviews reinforce the ICC stance on trade, investment and other business topics. Every year, the ICC Presidency meets with the leader of the G8 host country to provide business input to the summit. ICC is the main business partner of the United Nations and its agencies.
Spreading business expertise At UN summits on sustainable development, financing for development and the information society, ICC spearheads the business contribution. Together with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), ICC helps some of the world''s poorest countries to attract foreign direct investment. In partnership with UNCTAD, ICC has set up an Investment Advisory Council for the least-developed countries. ICC mobilizes business support for the New Partnership for Africa''s Development. At ICC World Congresses every two years, business executives tackle the most urgent international economic issues. The World Chambers Con-gress, also biennial, provides a global forum for chambers of commerce. Regular ICC regional con-ferences focus on the concerns of business in Africa, Asia, the Arab World