CISG Advisory Council Opinion No. 6

Calculation of Damages under CISG Article 74

Index

To be cited as: CISG-AC Opinion No. 6, Calculation of Damages under CISG Article 74. Rapporteur: Professor John Y. Gotanda, Villanova University School of Law, Villanova, Pennsylvania, USA.

Adopted by the CISG-AC at its Spring 2006 meeting in Stockholm, Sweden.

Reproduction of this opinion is authorized.

Jan Ramberg, Chair

Eric E. Bergsten, Michael Joachim Bonell, Alejandro M. Garro, Roy M. Goode, John Y. Gotanda,
Sergei N. Lebedev, Pilar Perales Viscasillas, Peter Schlechtriem, Ingeborg Schwenzer, Hiroo Sono,
Claude Witz, Members.

Loukas A. Mistelis, Secretary

OPINION

Article 74 CISG

Damages for breach of contract by one party consist of a sum equal to the loss, including loss of profit, suffered by the other party as a consequence of the breach. Such damages may not exceed the loss which the party in breach foresaw or ought to have foreseen at the time of the conclusion of the contract, in the light of the facts and matters of which he then knew or ought to have known, as a possible consequence of the breach of contract.

Opinion

1.       Article 74 reflects the general principle of full compensation.
 
2.     The aggrieved party has the burden to prove, with reasonable certainty, that it suffered loss. The aggrieved party also has the burden to prove the extent of the loss, but need not do so with mathematical precision.
 
3.     The aggrieved party is entitled to non-performance damages, which is typically measured by the market value of the benefit of which the aggrieved party has been deprived through the breach, or the costs of reasonable measures to bring about the situation that would have existed had the contract been properly performed.
 
     A.       The aggrieved party is entitled to any net gains prevented as a result of the breach.
 
     B.     Lost profits recoverable under Article 74 may include loss of profits that are expected to be incurred after the time damages are assessed by a tribunal.
 
     C.     Lost profits include those arising from lost volume sales.
 
4.     The aggrieved party is entitled to additional costs reasonably incurred as a result of the breach and of measures taken to mitigate the loss.
 
5.     Under Article 74, the aggrieved party cannot recover expenses associated with litigation of the breach.
 
6.     The aggrieved party is entitled to damages for pecuniary loss resulting from claims by third parties as a result of the breach of contract.
 
7.     The aggrieved party is entitled to damages for loss of goodwill as a consequence of the breach.
 
8.     If there has been a breach of contract and then the aggrieved party enters into a reasonable substitute transaction without first having avoided the contract, the aggrieved party may recover damages under Article 74, that is, the difference between the contract price and the substitute transaction.
 
9.     Damages must not place the aggrieved party in a better position than it would have enjoyed if the contract had been properly performed.
 
      A.     In calculating the amount of damages owed to the aggrieved party, the loss to the aggrieved party resulting from the breach is to be offset, in principle, by any gains to the aggrieved party resulting from the non-performance of the contract.
 
      B.     Punitive damages may not be awarded under Article 74 of the Convention.

 

COMMENTS

1. Article 74 reflects the general principle of full compensation.

1.1 Article 74 does not provide specific guidelines for calculating damages.[1] Instead, it gives the tribunal the authority to determine the aggrieved party's "loss suffered ... as a consequence of the breach" based on the circumstances of the particular case. The purpose of Article 74 is to place the aggrieved party in the same pecuniary position it would have been in had the breach not occurred and the contract been properly performed.[2] In other words, it is designed to give the aggrieved party the "benefit of the bargain."[3] Accordingly, Article 74 is to be liberally construed to compensate an aggrieved party for all disadvantages suffered as a result of the breach. However, all claims for damages, including under Article 74, are subject to limitations imposed by the doctrines of foreseeability and mitigation.[4]

1.2 The principle of full compensation for breach of contract established by Article 74 is expressed in many national laws.[5] In addition, the principle is set forth in both the UNIDROIT Principles and the Principles of European Contract Law (PECL).[6] It is also consistent with decisions of many international tribunals.[7]

1.3 It should be noted at the outset that parties may agree upon the remedies available for breach of contract.[8] For example, they may limit the scope of liability in the event that a party terminates the contract because of certain events. In addition, they may include a liquidated damages provision, which provides for a specified amount of damages to be paid by a party who repudiates the agreement. However, some jurisdictions may refuse for public policy reasons to enforce such a clause.[9]   

2. The aggrieved party has the burden to prove, with reasonable certainty, that it suffered a loss. The aggrieved party also has the burden to prove the extent of the loss, but need not do so with mathematical precision.

2.1 Article 74 does not explicitly address to what extent aggrieved parties must prove that they have suffered a loss in order to recover damages under that provision.[10] As a result, there has been controversy over whether this matter is implicitly addressed by the Convention or whether it is a procedural matter to be resolved according to domestic law. Some courts and tribunals have held that the issue is a procedural matter beyond the scope of the Convention.[11] However, relying on such an approach could be counterproductive and lead to differential treatment of similarly situated parties.

 2.2 In order to recover damages for breach of contract, the aggrieved party must prove that it has suffered a loss as a result of the breach. In common law countries, the requisite level of proof is often found in the requirement that the claimant prove "certainty of damages." This typically means the aggrieved party must prove with reasonable certainty that a loss was sustained or will be sustained.[12] Some civil law countries also require that damages be reasonably certain in their existence but not in amount,[13] while others impose a higher standard of proof to recover damages, particularly with respect to claims for lost profits.[14]

 2.3 The existence of differing rules concerning the proof of damage could lead to the differential treatment of similarly situated parties. For example, buyers attempting to prove future losses often rely on assumptions about market prices and the amount of future sales. If a seller wrongfully refuses to deliver a new product or a product that the buyer had not previously been in the business of selling, there may be little concrete evidence on which the aggrieved buyer can base its damages claim, which would mainly consist of loss of profit.[15] In such a case, countries requiring a high level of proof with regard to the fact that the aggrieved party suffered a loss would likely not allow the recovery of lost profits under Article 74. However, in countries that have a more relaxed level of proof, the aggrieved party may be able to recover such damages under Article 74. This result would be unfair and undermine the goal of the Convention to provide a uniform law on the sale of goods. In addition, the former approach would be contrary to the principle of full compensation. It also could provide an incentive for a party to breach its contractual obligations. As one arbitral tribunal, in a non-CISG case, explained:

"[I]f recovery were limited to what a claimant has spent in reliance on a contract which has been breached, an incentive would be created which is contrary to the contractual morality: obligors would generally find it in their interest to breach contracts which turn out to be valuable to their co-contractant. Parties do not enter into contracts involving risk in order to be repaid their costs. To limit the recovery of the victim of a breach to its actual expenditures is to transform it into a lender, which is intolerable when that party was full risk for the amount of the investments made on the strength of the contract."[16]

 2.4 Furthermore, from a policy perspective, the breaching party should not be able to escape liability because the breaching party's wrongful act caused the difficulty in proving damages with absolute certainty.[17] As one United States court noted, "it is particularly in the area of quantifying the amount of lost profits that courts impose the risk of uncertainty on the breaching party whose breach gave rise to the uncertainty."[18]

 2.5 Moreover, relying on applicable procedural law to resolve this issue may be counterproductive.[19] This is because whether a matter is considered substantive or procedural may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and may depend on the circumstances of a particular case.[20] Instead, the analysis should focus on whether the matter is governed by the Convention by examining "the purposes and policies of individual provisions as well as the Convention as a whole" and giving due regard to the need for a uniform interpretation.[21]

 2.6 Given the need to promote the Convention's international character and the need to promote uniformity in the Convention's application, and in light of the purposes and policies of Article 74, the aggrieved party bears the burden of proving with reasonable certainty such party has suffered a loss as a result of the breach. The imposition of a "reasonable" standard should not be viewed as radical. Rather, it is consistent with the Convention as a whole. As one commentator notes:  

"[O]n several occasions the Convention refers to the parties as 'reasonable' persons (see, e.g., Articles 8(2) and (3); 25; 35(1)(b); 60; 72(2); 75; 77; 79(1); 85; 86; 88(2)), requires that a particular act must be accomplished or a notice given within a 'reasonable time' (see, e.g., Articles 18(2); 33(3); 39(1); 43(1); 47; 49; 63; 64; 65; 73(2)), and distinguishes between 'reasonable' and 'unreasonable' expense, inconvenience or excuse (see, e.g., Article 43; 37; 48; 87; 88(2) and (3)). These references demonstrate that under the Convention the 'reasonableness' test constitutes a general criterion for evaluating the parties' behavior to which one may resort in the absence of any specific regulation."[22]

 2.7 Requiring the aggrieved parties to prove, with reasonable certainty, that that party suffered a loss is consistent with the UNIDROIT Principles and the PECL.[23] The UNIDROIT Principles states: "[c]ompensation is due only for harm, including future harm, that is established with a reasonable degree of certainty."[24] The comments further provide that this "reaffirms the well-known requirement of certainty of harm . ..."[25] The PECL states: "[t]he loss for which damages are recoverable include: (a) non-pecuniary loss; and (b) future loss which is reasonably likely to occur."[26]

 2.8 This requirement is also in accord with many national laws.[27] Furthermore, it is consistent with the decisions of a number of courts and tribunals that have imposed a requirement that damages be proved with reasonable certainty.[28]  

2.9 If aggrieved parties are able to meet the burden of proving damages with reasonable certainty, they then have the burden to prove the extent of damages, but need not do so with mathematical precision.[29] The aggrieved party must only provide a basis upon which a tribunal can reasonably estimate the extent of damages. An aggrieved party may be able to do this through, for example, the use of expert testimony, economic and financial data, market surveys and analyses, or business records of similar enterprises.[30] This requirement strikes a balance between the need for evidence upon which tribunals may base an award of damages and the recognition that the difficulty of proving that any damages in fact stem from the breaching party's wrongful act.[31]

 3. The aggrieved party is entitled to non-performance damages, which is typically measured by the market value of the benefit of which the aggrieved party has been deprived through the breach, or the costs of reasonable measures to bring about the situation that would have existed had the contract been properly performed.

3.1 Under Article 74, an aggrieved party is entitled to be compensated for the value of its unrealized contractual expectation in order to receive the benefit of the bargain. This loss is sometimes termed non-performance loss, direct loss, or loss in value. It is often measured by "the difference between the value to the aggrieved party of the performance that should have been received and the value to that party of what, if anything, actually was received."[32]

 3.2 In other cases, the aggrieved party may undertake measures to place it in the same position that it would have been in had the contract been properly performed. In such circumstances, the aggrieved party is entitled to recover the costs of those measures, provided that they were reasonable.[33] For example, when a seller delivers defective goods and the buyer repairs them, tribunals have awarded the aggrieved buyer, among other things, the expenses incurred in repairing the goods.[34] In addition, where a seller is unjustifiably delayed in delivering the goods and the buyer undertakes measures to overcome the temporary loss of the goods, tribunals have awarded the aggrieved buyer the expenses it incurred in overcoming the loss of the benefit of performance. For example, in the decision of the Oberlandesgericht Köln, 8 January 1997, the seller of tanning machines did not return by the agreed upon date machines that it had taken back to adjust. The buyer then hired a third party to treat its leather goods. The Provincial Court of Appeal ruled that, under Article 74, the buyer was entitled to recover the sum paid to the third party because the hiring of that party was viewed as reasonable under the circumstance.[35]

 3.3 The Secretariat Commentary provides the following additional example:[36]

 "The contract provided for the sale of 100 tons of grain for a total price of $50,000 FOB. When the delivered grain had more moisture in it than allowable under the contract description and, as a result of the moisture, there had been some deterioration in quality. The extra cost to Buyer of drying the grain was $1,500. If the grain had been as contracted, its value would have been $55,000, but because of the deterioration caused by the moisture after it was dried the grain was worth only $51,000.

Contract price

$50,000

Value the grain would have had if as contracted

$55,000

Value of grain as delivered

$51,000

 

$ 4,000

Extra expenses of drying the grain

$ 1,500

Loss arising out of the breach

$ 5,500"

 3.4 This approach is in accord with the UNIDROIT Principles and the PECL.[37] UNIDROIT Principles Article 7.4.2(1) provides: "The aggrieved party is entitled to full compensation for harm sustained as a result of non-performance. Such harm includes both any loss which it suffered and any gain of which it was deprived . ..."[38] Similarly, PECL Article 9:502 states: "The general measure of damages is such sum as will put the aggrieved party as nearly as possible into the position in which it would have been if the contract had been duly performed. Such damages cover the loss which the aggrieved party has suffered and the gain of which it has been deprived."[39]

3.5 An aggrieved party also may recover losses resulting from declining exchange rates if the aggrieved party can prove that it would have received a higher monetary value if the breaching party had paid the money owed pursuant to the contract.[40] The aggrieved party's loss in this situation can be measured by the difference between the converted value of the currency at the time payment was due under the contract and the value of the converted currency at the time of payment.[41]

3.6 The following example illustrates this point. Assume that a contract calls for a buyer to pay U.S. $10,000 upon delivery of goods to a seller in country X where the currency is the Euro and the rate of exchange (at the time of delivery) for U.S. $10,000 is Euro $10,000. The buyer then wrongfully refuses to pay the seller and the seller files a suit in an American court to collect. However, by the time that the court enters judgment in favor of the seller, US $1 is worth only Euro $0.7692. Thus, awarding the seller U.S. $10,000 would, in effect, give the seller only Euro $7692. The seller is thus entitled to its payment under the contract (U.S. $10,000), plus an additional U.S. $3,000, which would give the seller the equivalent of Euro $10,000.

 3.7 While the Convention does not explicitly address how courts and tribunals should treat the issue of loss resulting from fluctuating exchange rates, it is consistent with the principle of full compensation that the aggrieved party be compensated for the loss.[42] There has been some confusion over whether loss resulting from the devaluation of currency may be recovered under the Convention, primarily because of the principle of nominalism and the rule that a creditor ordinarily bears the risk of declining exchange rates.[43] While a creditor/aggrieved party may indeed bear the risk of fluctuating exchange rates over the course of the contract, such party does not continue to bear the risk after the debt has matured.[44] If this were the case, the aggrieved party would be assigned a risk that it did not intend to assume under the contract and, when the currency of payment is in steady decline, a debtor would have an incentive to delay payment for as long as possible.[45]

 3.8 Numerous courts have awarded damages for exchange rate losses under Article 74.[46] However, they have limited compensation to situations in which the creditor/aggrieved party can show that if it had received payment when due, the aggrieved party would have obtained a higher value by converting the money into its local currency.[47] But when a creditor of a foreign currency debt usually conducts its business in a different currency, presumably such party would immediately convert the foreign currency and therefore be entitled to the value determined by the exchange rate at maturity of the obligation.[48] Losses may also arise from the devaluation of currency when the currency of agreement is also the creditor's local currency. This situation is distinct from losses resulting from declining exchange rates; generally these losses have not been regarded as compensable.[49]

 3.9 Many national laws and courts have compensated aggrieved parties for exchange rate losses.[50] In addition, both the UNIDROIT Principles and the PECL also provide aggrieved parties a remedy for declining exchange rates after maturity of the debt.[51] However, they do so through requiring that payment be made according to the applicable rate of exchange prevailing either when the payment is due or at the time of payment. In other words, instead of awarding the loss from the devaluation of currency as damages, the UNIDROIT Principles and the PECL explicitly provide for essentially the same result by allowing a tribunal to fix the damages according to an appropriate exchange rate so that the aggrieved party does not suffer a loss because of a change in the exchange rate post-breach.[52] Since the Convention does not contain an explicit provision governing this issue, it is appropriate to consider the loss as damages recoverable under Article 74.[53]

FOOTNOTES

 The CISG-AC is a private initiative supported by the Institute of International Commercial Law at Pace University School of Law and the Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary, University of London. The International Sales Convention Advisory Council (CISG-AC) is in place to support understanding of the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) and the promotion and assistance in the uniform interpretation of the CISG.

At its formative meeting in Paris in June 2001, Prof. Peter Schlechtriem of Freiburg University, Germany, was elected Chair of the CISG-AC for a three-year term. Dr. Loukas A. Mistelis of the Centre for Commercial Studies, Queen Mary, University of London, was elected Secretary. The CISG-AC has consisted of: Prof. Emeritus Eric E. Bergsten, Pace University; Prof. Michael Joachim Bonell, University of Rome La Sapienza; Prof. E. Allan Farnsworth, Columbia University School of Law; Prof. Alejandro M. Garro, Columbia University School of Law; Prof. Sir Roy M. Goode, Oxford; Prof. Sergei N. Lebedev, Maritime Arbitration Commission of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation; Prof. Jan Ramberg, University of Stockholm, Faculty of Law; Prof. Peter Schlechtriem, Freiburg University; Prof. Hiroo Sono, Faculty of Law, Hokkaido University; Prof. Claude Witz, Universität des Saarlandes and Strasbourg University. At subsequent meetings, Prof. Jan Ramberg was elected as the Chair of the CISG-AC for the term June 2004 to June 2007 and the CISG-AC elected as additional members Prof. Pilar Perales Viscasillas, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Prof. Ingeborg Schwenzer, University of Basel, and Prof. John Y. Gotanda, Villanova University School of Law.

 1. The Secretariat Commentary provides:

Since article 70 [draft counterpart to CISG Article 74] is applicable to claims for damages by both buyer and the seller and these claims may arise out of a wide range of situations, including claims for ancillary damages to a request that the party in breach perform the contract or to a declaration of avoidance of a contract, no specific rules have been set forth in article 70 describing the appropriate method of determining "the loss ... suffered ... as a consequence of the breach." The court or the arbitral tribunal must calculate the loss in the manner which best suits the circumstances.

Secretariat Commentary, art. 70 [draft counterpart to CISG art. 74], ¶ 4, reprinted in HONNOLD, DOCUMENTARY HISTORY OF THE UNIFORM LAW FOR INTERNATIONAL SALES, Kluwer 1989, p. 449 [hereinafter "Secretariat Commentary"], also available at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cisg/text/secomm/secomm-74.html>. There exists no official commentary on the CISG. The Secretariat Commentary is on the 1978 Draft of the Convention. Nevertheless, the Commentary reflects that Secretariat's impressions of the purposes and effects of the Commission's work and provides a helpful analysis of official text of the CISG. See KRITZER, GUIDE TO PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS OF THE UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION ON CONTRACTS FOR THE INTERNATIONAL SALE OF GOODS, Kluwer, 1989, p. 2 ("[The Secretariat] Commentaries are the closest available counterpart to an Official Commentary on the Convention and, when they are relevant, constitute the most authoritative citations to the meaning of the Convention that one can find."). 

2. See SCHLECHTRIEM/SCHWENZER/Stoll/Gruber, COMMENTARY ON THE U.N. CONVENTION ON THE INTERNATIONAL SALE OF GOODS, 2nd ed., Oxford, 2005, art. 74, ¶ 2; Honnold, Uniform Law for International Sales, 3rd ed., Kluwer, 1998, p. 445 (citing TREITEL, REMEDIES FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT, Oxford, 1998, p. 82).  

3.See Farnsworth, Damages and Specific Relief, 27 Am. J. Comp. L. pp. 247, 249 (1979); Sutton, Measuring Damages Under the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods, 50 Ohio State L.J. pp. 737, 742 (1989).

4. CISG arts. 74, 77.

5. See HARRIS/TALLON, CONTRACT LAW TODAY: ANGLO-FRENCH COMPARISONS, Oxford 1989, p. 274; Draetta, et al., Transnational Contract Law in THE LAW OF TRANSNATIONAL BUSINESS TRANSACTIONS, Federation Press, 2003, § 4:50; Robinson v. Harman 1 Exch p. 850 (1848); The Unique Mariner [1979] 1 Lloyd's Rep. 37, 54; WADDAMS, THE LAW OF DAMAGES, Canada Law Book Limited, 1983, ¶ 536; CORBIN, CORBIN ON CONTRACTS, West, 1952, p. 525; CANADA, Asamera Oil Corp. v. Sea Oil & General Corp., Supreme Court of Canada, 1979, 1 S.C.R. p. 663.


6. UNIDROIT Principles art. 7.4.2; PECL art. 9:502.


7. See Sapphire International Petroleums Ltd. v. National Iranian Oil Co., Arbitral Award, 15 March 1963, reprinted in 35 I.L.R. pp. 136, 182 (1967); Delagoa Bay and East African Railway Co. (U.S. and Great Britain v. Portugal) (1900), summarized in pertinent part in WHITEMAN, DAMAGES IN INTERNATIONAL LAW, William S. Hein & Co., 1943, vol. 3, pp. 1694, 1697; see also WESTBERG, INTERNATIONAL TRANSACTIONS AND CLAIMS INVOLVING GOVERNMENT PARTIES: CASE LAW OF THE IRAN-U.S. CLAIMS TRIBUNAL, Int'l. Law Inst., 1991, p. 190. The arbitrator in the celebrated Sapphire case explained this principle as follows:

According to the generally held view, the object of damages is to place the party to whom they are awarded in the same pecuniary position that they would have been in if the contract had been performed in the manner provided for by the parties at the time of its conclusion. ... This rule is simply a direct deduction from the principle of pacta sunt servanda, since its only effect is to substitute a pecuniary obligation for the obligation which was promised but not performed. It is therefore natural that the creditor should thereby be given full compensation. This compensation includes loss suffered (damnum emergens), for example expenses incurred in performing the contract, and the profit lost (lucrum cessans), for example the net profit which the contract would have produced. Sapphire, 35 I.L.R. pp. 185-86.

8. CISG art. 6.

9. FARNSWORTH, FARNSWORTH ON CONTRACTS, Aspen, 2004, vol. 3, § 12.18.

10. Commentators have asserted that the CISG imposes a burden of providing evidence of damages on a claimant. See ENDERLEIN/MASKOW, INTERNATIONAL SALES LAW, Oceana Publications 1992, p. 298. However, the CISG does not expressly require that damages be proved with certainty. See Saidov, Methods of Limiting Damages under the Vienna Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods, § 5 (2001), available at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cisg/biblio/saidov.html> .

11. See UNITED STATES, Delchi Carrier S.p.A. v. Rotorex Corp., U.S. Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit), 6 Dec. 1996, CISG-online.ch 140; see also FINLAND, Helsingin Hoviokeus, 26 Oct. 2000, CISG-online.ch 1078; SWITZ., Bezirksgericht der Saane, 20 Feb. 1997, CISG-online.ch 426; ARBITRATION, ICC Court of Arbitration, 23 Jan. 1997 CISG-online.ch 236. One commentator examining CISG cases in the Russian Federation concludes that arbitration tribunals there have consistently applied their own discretion to determine the level of proof necessary. See Saidov, Cases on CISG Decided in the Russian Federation, 7 VINDOBONA J. INT'L COM. L. & ARB. pp. 1-62, 50 (2003).

12. See UNITED STATES, Bagwell v. Middle S. Energy, U.S.Court of Appeals (5th Cir.), 1986, 797 F.2d p. 1298; UNITED STATES, Locke v. United States, U.S.Court of Claims, 1960, 283 F.2d p. 521; UNITES STATES, Kozlowski v. Kozlowski, New Jersey Supreme Court,1979, 403 A.2d p. 902; CHITTY ON CONTRACTS, 24th ed., Sweet & Maxwell, 1977, vol. 1, §1562; CARTER/HARLAND, CONTRACT LAW IN AUSTRALIA, 4th ed., LexisNexis, 2002, ¶¶ 2117; see also RESTATEMENT, CONTRACTS (SECOND) § 352 (1981) (U.S.); DOBBS, LAW OF REMEDIES, West, 1993, §§ 12.4(3), 12.9(2); MCGREGOR, MCGREGOR ON DAMAGES, 14th ed., Sweet & Maxwell, 1980, § 261; see also WADDAMS, op. cit., ¶ 1051; ARBITRAL AWARD, Final Award in Case No. 78445 of 1996, reprinted in XXVI Y.B. COM ARB. pp. 167, 175 (2001) (citing INDIA, State of Kerala v. K. Bhaskaran, AIR (1985) Kerala p. 55); ROBERT DUNN, RECOVERY OF DAMAGES FOR LOST PROFITS, 5th ed., Cromwell-Smith, 1998, § 1.6; Gotanda, Recovering Lost Profits in International Disputes, 36 GEO J. INT'L L. p. 61 (2005).

13. See Simont, Belgium, in TRANSNATIONAL LITIGATION, Oceana, 2003, p. BEL-64; Vargas/Lira, Brazil, in TRANSNATIONAL LITIGATION, Oceana, 1997, p. BRA-11. 

14. Wirth et al., Switzerland, in TRANSNATIONAL LITIGATION, Oceana, 1997, p. SWI-77.

15. The Helsinki Court of Appeals dealt with a similar scenario, where the seller had refused delivery of plastic carpets that the buyer had not previously been in the business of selling. See FINLAND, Helsingin hoviokeus, 26 Oct. 2000, CISG-online.ch 1078. In this case the buyer had entered into a requirements contract with a third party for the resale of the plastic carpets. Id. The court, in estimating the buyer's damage as a result of the seller's breach, held that the buyer's sales goal could not be used as basis for estimating lost profits. Id.

16. ARBITRAL AWARD, Himpurna California Energy Ltd. V. P.T. (Persero) Perusahaan Listruik Negara, Final Award of 4 May 1999, reprinted in XXV Y.B. COM. ARB. pp. 13, 83-84 (2000).

17. See UNITED STATES, Southwest Battery Corp. v. Owen, Texas Supreme Court, 1938, 115 S.W.2d p. 1097 ("A party who breaks his contract cannot escape liability because it is impossible to state or prove a perfect measure of damages."); UNITED STATES, Super Valu Stores, Inc. v. Peterson, Alabama Supreme Court, 1987, 506 So.2d p. 317 ("[T]he risk of uncertainty must fall on the defendant whose wrongful conduct caused the damages.")

 18. UNITED STATES, Mid-America Tablewares, Inc. v. Mogi Trading Co., U.S.Court of Appeals (7th Cir.), 1996, 100 F.3d p. 1353.

19. See ZELLER, DAMAGES UNDER THE CONVENTION ON CONTRACTS FOR THE INTERNATIONAL SALE OF GOODS, Oceana, 2005, pp. 158-59 (noting substance-procedure distinction allows courts to apply local law that they are familiar with and leads to forum shopping, and, in some cases where procedural law has been applied instead of an international convention, "the application of domestic procedural law disported the process of what could have been a uniform application of substantive law").

20, See Orlandi, Procedural Law Issues and Law Conventions, 5 UNIFORM L. REV. p. 23 (2000); See also, UNITED STATES, Sun Oil Co. v. Wortman, U.S. Supreme Court, 1998, 486 U.S. p. 717 ("Except at the extremes, the terms 'substance' and 'procedure' precisely describe very little except dichotomy, and what they mean in a particular context is largely determined by the purposes for which the dichotomy is drawn."); UNITED STATES, Hanna v. Plumer, U.S.Supreme Court,1965, 380 U.S. p. 460 ("The line between 'substance' and 'procedure' shifts as the legal context changes. Each implies different variables depending upon the particular problem for which it is used."); see also Gotanda, Awarding Interest in International Arbitration, 90 AM J. INT'L L. p. 40 (1996) (noting that "many countries regard the awarding of interest as substantive, while others deem rules concerning interest procedural").

 21. See BIANCA/BONELL/Knapp, COMMENTARY ON THE INTERNATIONAL SALES LAW, THE 1980 VIENNA SALES CONVENTION, Giuffrè, Milano, 1987, art. 7, ¶¶ 2.2.1-2.3.1 (stating that in cases of ambiguities or obscurities in text and gaps, "courts should to the largest possible extent refrain from resorting to the different domestic laws and try to find a solution within the Convention itself" by looking "to the underlying purposes and policies of individual provisions as well as of the Convention as a whole").

 22. BIANCA/BONELL/Bonell, op. cit., art. 7, ¶ 2.3.2.2; see Saidov, Standards of Proving Loss and Determining the Amount of Damages, 22 J. CONT. L. p. 1 (Mar. 2006).

 23. See Eiselen, Remarks on the Manner in which the UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts May be Used to Interpret or Supplement Article 74 of the CISG, ¶ k, available at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cisg/principles/uni74.html>; Blase/Höttler, Remarks on the Damages Provisions in the CISG, Principles of European Contract Law (PECL) and UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts (UPICC), available at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cisg/text/peclcomp74.html>.

24. Art. 7.4.3.

 25. Art. 7.4.3 cmt. 1 (emphasis added).

 26. Art. 9:501(2) (emphasis added).

 27. See Hahnkamper, Austria, in TRANSNATIONAL LITIGATION, Oceana, 1999, p. AUS-88; Simont, op. cit., p. BEL-63 (Belgium); Wirth, op. cit., p. SWI-76 (Switz.) (citing GAUCH/SCHLUEP, SCHWEIZERISCHES OBLIGATIONENRECHT, ALLGEMEINER TEIL, Zürich, 6th ed., 1995, vol. 2, pp. 2624, 2630, 2726; RESTATEMENT, CONTRACTS (SECOND) § 352 (1981) (U.S.); see also Gotanda, Lost Profits, op. cit., p. 87 ("[I]n general, the claimant must prove lost profits with reasonable certainty. In many countries though, the certainty rule applies only to the fact that the breach resulted in claimant's loss of future revenues and not to the amount of profits it lost.").

 28. FINLAND, Helsingin Hoviokeus, 26 Oct., 2000, CISG-online.ch 1078; RUSSIA, ICA Arbitral Tribunal, 27 July, 1999, CISG-online.ch 779; UNITED STATES, Delchi Carrier S.p.A. v. Rotorex Corp., U.S.Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit), 6 Dec. 1995, CISG-online.ch 140; see also TeeVee Toons, Inc. v. Gerhard Schubert GmbH, No. 00 Civ. 5189 (RCC) (U.S. Dist. Ct. S.D.N.Y. Aug. 23, 2006), available at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/060823u1.html>.

29. Cf. C.c. art. 1226 (Italy); BW art. 6:105 (Neth.); UNITED STATES, California Lettuce Growers v. Union Sugar Co., California Supreme Court, 1955, 289 P.2d pp. 785, 793. Comments to the American U.C.C. "reject[s] any doctrine that damages must be calculable with mathematical accuracy," stating that "[c]ompensatory damages are often best approximate; they have to be proved with whatever definiteness and accuracy the facts permit, but no more." U.C.C. § 1-106 cmt. 1 (U.S.). The UNIDROIT Principles states that "where the amount of damages cannot be established with a sufficient degree of certainty, the assessment is at the discretion of the court." UNIDROIT Principles art. 7.4.3(3).

 30. See UNITED STATES, Butler v. Westgate State Bank, Kansas Supreme Court, 1979, 596 P.2d p. 156; UNITED STATES, Alliance Tractor & Implement Co. v. Lukens Tool & Die Co., Nebraska Supreme Court, 1979, 281 N.W.2d p. 778; UNITED STATES, Houston Exploration, Inc. v. Meredith, Nevada Supreme Court, 728 P.2d p. 437 (1986); UNITED STATES, Edwards v. Container Kraft & Paper Supply Co., California Court of Appeals, 1958, 327 P.2d p. 622; RESTATEMENT, CONTRACTS (SECOND) § 352 cmt. b (1981) (U.S.).

In one tribunal in a non-CISG case, the claimant calculated its claimed lost profits on the basis of detailed forecasts of expected results during the relevant time period, including the forecasted production capacity of a factory that the respondent failed to complete, the forecasted sales of the product that was to be made at the factory (based largely on statements from the claimant's customers that they would have bought certain quantities of the product at prices that were competitive with those offered by the claimant's competitors). The tribunal "accept[ed] that the claimed amount of loss of profit fairly represents what the claimant would have earned during the relevant period of time, if production according to the Agreement had been performed." SWEDEN, Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce, Interim Award of 17 July 1992 and Final Award of 13 Jul. 1993, reprinted in pertinent part in XXII Y.B. COM. ARB. p. 197 (1997).

 31. As the tribunal in Final Award in Case No. 8362 of 1995 pointed out, in a non-CISG case:

 
With respect to the calculation of the amount of damages, counterbalancing factors are taken into account under the law: on the one hand, there must be a sound basis upon which alleged damages are to be calculated. They cannot be the product of sheer speculation unsupported by tangible evidence. On the other hand, the law will not reward a party in breach by depriving the other party of compensation merely because no precise basis for determining the amount of damages exists.


ARBITRAL AWARD, Final Award in Case No. 8362 of 1995, reprinted in pertinent part in XXII Y.B. COM. ARB. pp. 164, 177 (1977). 

32. FARNSWORTH, op. cit., § 12.9; see, e.g., GERMANY, LG Trier, 12 Oct. 1995, CISG-online.ch 160.  The Secretariat Commentary provides


If the goods delivered had a recognized value which fluctuated, the loss to the buyer would be equal to the difference between the value of the goods as they exist and the value of the goods would have had if they had been stipulated in the contract. Since this formula is intended to restore him to the economic position he would have been in if the contract had been performed properly, the contract price of the goods is not an element of the calculation of damages.


Secretariat Commentary, op. cit., art. 70 [draft counterpart to CISG art. 74, ¶ 7.

33. See SCHLECHTRIEM/SCHWENZER/Stoll/Gruber, op. cit., art. 74, ¶ 14. The Secretariat Commentary states:


Where the seller delivers and the buyer retains defective goods, the loss suffered by the buyer might be measured in a number of different ways. If the buyer is able to cure the defect, the loss would often be equal to the cost of the repairs. If the goods delivered were machine tools, the buyer's loss might also include the loss resulting from lowered production during the period the tools could not be used.


Secretariat Commentary, op. cit., art. 70 [draft counterpart to CISG art. 74], ¶ 6. 

34. See AUSTRIA, OGH, 14 Jan., 2002, CISG-online.ch 643; see also CANADA, Nova Tool and Mold Inc. v. London Industries Inc., Ontario Court, 16 Dec. 1998, CISG-online.ch 572; GERMANY, AG Mchen, 23 June 1995, CISG-online.ch 368. Failed attempts to repair goods may also be compensated. See UNITED STATES, Delchi Carrier S.p.A. v. Rotorex Corp., U.S.Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit), 6 Dec. 1995, CISG-online.ch 140.

35. See GERMANY, OLG Köln, 8 Jan., 1997, CISG-online.ch 217.

36.Secretariat Commentary, op. cit., art. 70 [draft counterpart to CISG art. 74], ¶ 7.

37. For a discussion of the differences between the CISG damages provisions and the American Uniform Commercial Code, which has been adopted in some form by most states, see Flechtner, Remedies under the New International Sales Convention: The Perspective from Article 2 of the U.C.C., 8 J.L. & COM. pp. 53, 97-107 (1988).

38. UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts art. 7.4.2 (2004). For a comparison of the damages provisions of UNIDROIT Principles and the Convention, see Eiselen, op. cit.; see also Garro, The Gap-Filling Role of the UNIDROIT Principles in International Sales Law: Some Comments on the Interplay Between the Principles and the CISG, 69 TULANE L. REV. pp. 1149, 1152 (1995).

39. Principles of European Contract Law (PECL) art. 9:502 (prepared by the Commission on European Contract Law, Ole Lando and Hugh Beale eds., 2000). For a comparison of the damages provisions of the PECL, see Blase/Höttler, op. cit.

40. An aggrieved party may suffer losses resulting from the devaluation of currency when a debtor fails to make a payment when due and, in the interim between the maturity of the obligation and the receipt of payment, the exchange rate between the currency of the agreement and the aggrieved party's local currency declines. Then, upon conversion into its local currency, the aggrieved party does not receive the value that it expected under the contract. See UNCITRAL Digest of Case Law on the United Nations Convention on the International Sale of Goods, available at <http://daccessdds.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/V04/555/63/PDF/V0455563.pdf>; see also F.A. MANN, THE LEGAL ASPECT OF MONEY, Oxford, 4th ed., 1982, p. 286.

41. See SWITZERLAND, HG Zürich, 5 Feb. 1997, CISG-online.ch 327; NEW ZEALAND, Issac Naylor & Sons Ltd. v. New Zealand Cooperative Wool Marketing, 1981, 1 N.Z.L.R. p. 361; see also Vroegop, Exchange Losses on an International Sale of Goods, 1982 N.Z.L.J. pp. 3-4.

42. See Eiselen, op. cit.; Saidov, Cases on CISG Decided in the Russian Federation, 7 VINDOBONA J. INT'L COM. L. & ARB. pp. 1, 44-45 (2003); see also ENDERLEIN/MASKOW, op. cit., p. 298.

43. See, GERMANY, LG Heidelberg, 27 Jan. 1981, available at <http://cisgw3.law.pace.edu/cases/810127g1.html> (ULIS precedent); RUSSIA, Tribunal of International Commercial Arbitration at the Russian Federation Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICAC), 21 Apr. 1994, summarized in pertinent part in Saidov, op. cit., p. 44 n.197; see also Saidov, op. cit., pp. 44-5 (examining cases and concluding that ICAC has generally rejected recovery of exchange rate losses under theory that loss is creditor's domestic issue and risk should not be shifted to debtor). In general, the principle of nominalism applies only to single currency transactions and is not inconsistent with the recovery of exchange rate losses in multi-currency international contracts. See Brand, Exchange Loss Damage and the Uniform Foreign-Money Claims Act: The Emperor Hasn't All His Clothes, 23 LAW & POL'Y INT'L BUS. pp. 1, 44 (1992).

44. See MANN, op. cit., pp. 108, 286; Brand, op. cit., p. 44.


45. See also Brand, op. cit., pp. 43-44.

46. See SWITZERLAND, DT Ltd. v. B. AG, HG St. Gallen, 3 Dec. 2002, CISG-online.ch 727; SWITZERLAND, HG Zürich, 5 Feb. 1997, CISG-online.ch 327; NETHERLANDS, Gruppo IMAR v. Protech Horst, District Court Roermond, 6 May 1993, CISG-online.ch 454; see also GERMANY, OLG Düsseldorf, 14 Jan. 1994, CISG-online.ch 119.

47. See GERMANY, OLG Düsseldorf, 14 Jan. 1994, CISG-online.ch 119; see also SCHLECHTRIEM/SCHWENZER/Stoll/Gruber, op. cit., art. 74, ¶ 17.

48. See SWITZERLAND, DT Ltd. v. B. AG, HG St. Gallen, 3 Dec. 2002, CISG-online.ch 727; see also SCHLECHTRIEM/SCHWENZER/Stoll/Gruber, op. cit., art. 74,¶ 17.

49. See ITALY, Tessile v. Ixela, District Court Pavia, 29 Dec. 1999, CISG-online.ch 678; GERMANY, OLG Düsseldorf, 14 Jan. 1994, CISG-online.ch 119; see also ENDERLEIN/MASKOW, op. cit., p. 302. In Tessile v. Ixela, an Italian seller brought a claim for the remainder of the unpaid purchase price of high fashion textiles, where the contract called for payment in Italian lira. The seller claimed damages due to monetary devaluation of the Italian lira. However, the court stated that "[n]othing is due by right of greater damages from monetary devaluation because, in the period of time involved here, the legal interest rates have always been greater than the rate of inflation." Id. Thus, according to the court, ordinary currency devaluation is intended to be compensated through the awarding of interest.

50. See NEW ZEALAND, Issac Naylor & Sons Ltd. v. New Zealand Cooperative Wool Marketing, 1981, 1 N.Z.L.R. p. 361; UNITED KINGDOM, Milliangos v. George Frank (Textiles) Ltd., 1976 A.C. pp. 443, 465; MANN, op. cit., pp. 286-87.

51. See UNIDROIT Principles art. 6.1.9(4); PECL art. 7:108(3).

52. See PECL art. 7:108 cmt.; RESTATEMENT (THIRD) OF FOREIGN RELATIONS LAW § 823(2) (1986) (U.S

53. Relying on national laws to compensate an aggrieved party for loss due to a change in the exchange rate would result in similarly situated parties receiving different results because such laws differ from country to country. See generally GOTANDA, SUPPLEMENTAL DAMAGES IN PRIVATE INTERNATIONAL LAW, Kluwer, 1998, § 4 (surveying national laws on damages in foreign currencies and noting that there are three general dates on which the convention should be performed: date of breach, date of judgment, and date of payment). But cf. UNITED STATES, Delchi Carrier S.p.

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