Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development
Select a target for more information about UNCITRAL's role.
Resources for development come from various sources, including private investment and international trade. To stimulate access to such resources, the local policy/legal/regulatory and enforcement framework should be built on internationally recognized commercial law standards. The use of UNCITRAL standards helps to ensure recognition and enforcement of property rights and binding commitments, create legal certainty, decrease the level of risk and transactional costs and build confidence in doing business domestically and across borders, which in turn stimulates commerce and the flow of investment (domestic and cross-border). UNCITRAL standards also facilitate sub-regional, regional and international economic integration and cooperation and seek to create new commercial opportunities, for example through e-commerce or harmonized rules to provide for modern transport needs. See also targets 1.a, 10.b, 17.3 and 17.5 for discussion of related issues.
A modern and harmonized international commercial law framework is the basis for rule-based commercial relations and an indispensable part of international trade. UNCITRAL standards represent what the international community considers, at a given time, to be the best international practices for regulating certain commercial transactions. They equip States with models and guidance to support sound commercial law reform at lower cost. Reliance on such standards enhances the quality of enacted legislation in the long run and builds confidence in the ease of doing business in a country that adheres to them. They thus assist States to put in place the legal framework that would facilitate mobilization of financial resources from multiple sources, including foreign investors, donors and the domestic private sector. See also targets 1.a, 10.b, 17.1 and 17.5 for discussion of related issues.
The establishment of sound rules furthering commercial relations is an important factor in economic development. This is because commercial decisions are taken not in isolation but in the context of relevant factors, including the applicable legal framework. To be investment-friendly, investment promotion regimes should therefore be adopted and implemented on the basis of internationally recognized commercial law standards. The harmonization of local legal frameworks with those standards would: (a) facilitate recognition, protection and enforcement of contracts and other commercial legal relations; (b) make commercial law more easily understandable to commercial parties; (c) promote uniform interpretation and application of international commercial law frameworks; and (d) provide legal certainty and predictability in order to assist parties to commercial transactions to take commercially reasonable decisions. See also targets 1.a, 10.b, 17.1 and 17.3 for discussion of related issues.
In many States, policymaking and legislative work has not kept pace with international developments in finance and commerce. Some States may have effective laws to regulate commerce, but their economic impact can be limited when there is no local capacity for their proper interpretation or application. To overcome those deficiencies and for accrual of the expected benefits of rule-based commercial relations and international trade, local capacity to develop and implement commercial law reform should not only be built, but regularly reviewed in response to evolving business practices.
The effective way to build that local capacity is through technical cooperation, training and capacity-building assistance aimed at strengthening local expertise to draw on readily available international standards, tools and expertise for carrying out commercial law reform at the country level. Coordinated participation of local experts in policy-setting and rule-formulating activities of regional and international bodies is also important for building local capacity. See targets 10.6 and 16.8 for discussion of related issues, and the Guidance Note endorsed by UNCITRAL that aims to address those challenges.
The experience of UNCITRAL technical assistance and cooperation activities demonstrates that, amid pressure to address other priorities, local needs in commercial law reform are systematically overlooked, with the result that resources are allocated to other areas and the local capacity of countries to engage in commercial law reform is weakened. There are often insufficient people in Governments with expertise in commercial law reform with whom UNCITRAL could establish a sustainable dialogue. For policy coherence for sustainable development, an excessive or exclusive focus on some areas to the detriment of other areas that are less visible should be avoided; reforms should be of an inclusive and comprehensive nature; and institutional reforms should not be undertaken at the expense of legislative reforms or without any necessary legislative underpinning. See also target 17.9 for discussion of related issues.
UNCITRAL has built strong partnerships with many organizations active in the field of international trade law and related fields. It continues to explore different approaches to the use of partnerships with various stakeholders in the implementation of its mandate, in particular in the area of training and technical assistance. Conducting outreach to United Nations country teams with the goal of increasing their awareness about the work of UNCITRAL and its relevance to their work is necessary, as are fund-raising activities in relation to UNCITRAL trust funds and regional presence. See targets 10.6, 16.8, 17.9 and 17.17 for discussion of related issues, and the Guidance Note endorsed by UNCITRAL that aims to address those challenges.
UNCITRAL is open to suggestions for building effective partnerships with Governments, UN bodies, other institutions and individuals related to the UNCITRAL mandate of modernizing, harmonizing and unifying the law of international trade. In particular, UNCITRAL is interested in achieving: (a) closer cooperation with United Nations country and regional teams on the use of its standards and needs for commercial law reform generally (see the Guidance Note endorsed by UNCITRAL that aims to address those challenges); (b) partnerships with civil society representatives to monitor the effectiveness of UNCITRAL standards; (c) partnerships with academia for UNCITRAL-related research, including on possible topics for future work; and (d) fund-raising for UNCITRAL trust funds and expanding UNCITRAL’s regional and country presence.