In Intercontainer Interfrigo SC (ICF) v Balkenende Oosthuizen BV [2009] EUECJ C-133/08_O (19 May 2009) the Advocate General considered Article 4 of the Rome Convention of 19 June 1980 on the law applicable to contractual obligations (the Rome Convention) following a reference by the Netherlands. The Advocate General recommended that the court respond to the reference as follows:

1. A contract, the object of which is the provision of a means of transport for the purpose of carrying goods on a specified voyage does not come within the scope of Article 4(4) of the Rome Convention where the establishment of the undertaking responsible for making that transport available is situated in a country other than that in which the place of loading, place of discharge or principal establishment of the other contracting party is located.

2. The law applicable to such a contract, in accordance with the first sentence of Article 4(1) of the Rome Convention, is that of the country with which the contract has the closest connections. These connections may be deduced, for example, from the fact that in a contract such as that at issue in the main proceedings, the other parties thereto are established in the Netherlands and the place of loading is located in that country.

3. The second sentence of Article 4(1) of the Rome Convention must be interpreted as meaning that the law of another country may be applied to part of the contract if that part is autonomously separable from the contract as a whole. The contract such as that here at issue, the object of which is a single performance, namely, the supply of a means of transport for the carriage of goods on a specified voyage, does not satisfy that requirement.