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Origin, Mandate and Composition of UNCITRAL

Origin

The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) was established by the General Assembly in 1966 ( Resolution 2205(XXI) of 17 December 1966). In establishing the Commission, the General Assembly recognized that disparities in national laws governing international trade created obstacles to the flow of trade, and it regarded the Commission as the vehicle by which the United Nations could play a more active role in reducing or removing these obstacles.

Archival documents predating the establishment of UNCITRAL

Mandate

The General Assembly gave the Commission the general mandate to further the progressive harmonization and unification of the law of international trade. The Commission has since come to be the core legal body of the United Nations system in the field of international trade law.

Composition

The Commission is composed of sixty member States elected by the General Assembly. Membership is structured so as to be representative of the world's various geographic regions and its principal economic and legal systems. Members of the Commission are elected for terms of six years, the terms of half the members expiring every three years.

As from 8 July 2013, the members of UNCITRAL, and the years when their memberships expire, are:

Algeria 2016
Argentina 2016
Armenia 2019
Australia 2016
Austria 2016
Belarus 2016
Botswana 2016
Brazil 2016
Bulgaria 2019
Cameroon 2019
Canada 2019
China 2019
Colombia 2016
Côte d'Ivoire 2019
Croatia 2016
Denmark 2019
Ecuador 2019
El Salvador 2019
Fiji 2016
France 2019
Gabon 2016
Georgia 2015
Germany 2019
Greece 2019
Honduras 2019
Hungary 2019
India 2016
Indonesia 2019
Iran (Islamic Republic of) 2016
Israel 2016
Italy 2016
Japan 2019
Jordan 2016
Kenya 2016
Kuwait 2019
Liberia 2019
Malaysia 2019
Mauritania 2019
Mauritius 2016
Mexico 2019
Namibia 2019
Nigeria 2016
Pakistan 2016
Panama 2019
Paraguay 2016
Philippines 2016
Republic of Korea 2019
Russian Federation 2019
Sierra Leone 2019
Singapore 2019
Spain 2016
Switzerland 2019
Thailand 2016
Turkey 2016
Uganda 2016
Ukraine 2014
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 2019
United States of America 2016
Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of) 2016
Zambia 2019

Member States History

General Assembly elects new UNCITRAL members ( Press release *)

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