International bank guarantees in globalized world: the financial, comercial, legal and political risks of international trade transactions

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Costa, Ligia Maura
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This thesis discusses the financial, commercial, political and legal risks of international trade operations involving International Bank Guarantees. It starts by defining the most usual international trade instruments and, then, defining Standby Letters of Credit, Performance Bonds and Bid Bonds issued according to the ISP 98, URGD 758 or UCP 600 as International Bank Guarantees. Later, it explores each specific risk. The financial risks are divided into foreign exchange risk, applicant's default risk and bank reputation risk. It is considered as a commercial risks frauds and low quality products. Legal risks are legal battles and local legislation. There is a topic that discusses specifically the U.S. related risks, as the country has a very particular legislation when it comes to International Bank Guarantees. The political risks are related to commercial embargoes and sanctions, changes in foreign policy and to the deterioration of commercial reations. The following section discusses how to mitigate each of the risks discussed. It shows whether or not this risk can be mitigated and if it also affects internation trade operations that do not use International Bank Guarantees. Lastly, the thesis discusses about the ideal international trade instrument. At the moment, International Bank Guarantees are the best instrument, still not the perfect one as it has some limitations.

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