United Nations Commission on International Trade Law

Outline of the organisation

As the core legal body of the United Nations system in the field of international trade law and a legal body with universal membership specialising in commercial law reform worldwide for over 50 years, the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL)'s business is the modernisation and harmonisation of rules on international business.

Trade means faster growth, higher living standards, and new opportunities through commerce. In order to increase these opportunities worldwide, UNCITRAL is formulating modern, fair, and harmonised rules on commercial transactions. These include:

  • Conventions, model laws and rules which are acceptable worldwide;
  • Legal and legislative guides and recommendations of great practical value;
  • Updated information on case law and enactments of uniform commercial law;
  • Technical assistance in law reform projects; and
  • Regional and national seminars on uniform commercial law.

Positions available

The International Trade Law Division of the UN Office of Legal Affairs (ITLD), which serves as the substantive secretariat of UNCITRAL, offers an unpaid internship programme for selected applicants whose major is commercial law, international trade law or private international law.

The Division includes a Legislative Branch tasked with the development of harmonised legislative texts and a Technical Assistance and Coordination Section tasked with the provision of technical assistance with respect to the adoption and use of UNCITRAL legal texts and coordination among organisations working in the field of international trade law.


  • Meeting general eligibility requirements enumerated in section 3 of the Administrative instruction on the United Nations internship programme (available online).
  • Fluency (spoken and written) in at least one of the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat (English and French); knowledge of other official languages of the United Nations (Arabic, Chinese, Russian and Spanish) is an asset.
  • Computer skills, including familiarity with applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Internet research.
  • Any advanced knowledge of work relating to web-site administration and familiarity with HTML will be considered an asset.

Application process

For more information, please visit here.