ITC’s Trade Law Unit offers technical assistance programmes using LegaCarta’s comprehensive features. The technical assistance programme and its different modules aim to provide a measurable improvement of a given country’s legal framework in relation to international trade.

How does it work?

The Trade Law Unit implements the technical assistance programmes at different levels depending on the needs expressed by the country. The technical assistance can be delivered in an integrated form or in different independent modules. The integrated form reaches the different levels of a legal framework: from the policy-makers to work on ratifications of key treaties, through increasing the knowledge of the ratified treaties within certain Ministries (Trade, Foreign Affairs, Justice) and/or other relevant public institutions, trade promotion organisations such as Chambers of Commerce and Export associations, the academic community to the legal and business community.

Module 1: Assessment

LegaCarta’s comprehensive database will help policy-makers to have an exact and thorough understanding of their country’s situation regarding ratification of the main multilateral trade treaties. This first assessment identifies the country’s strengths and weaknesses regarding key trade treaties and analyses the legal obligations and trade benefits deriving from key instruments. Each concerned Ministry is provided with a CD-ROM and a computer downloadable format containing the full country analysis of its ratification status regarding all multilateral trade treaties. Training for optimised use of LegaCarta is available.

Module 2: Workshops on ratification/key treaties’ accession:

ITC organises workshops with local partners and in cooperation with selected international organisations that administer the relevant multilateral agreements to develop a plan for accession to some strategic conventions, according to national priorities and development strategies. The purpose of the workshops is to enable the local partners to set up a priority list of treaties that should be ratified, taking into account the general relevance of these instruments and local/regional conditions. In particular, the advantages and pitfalls arising out of the ratification of the selected instruments are discussed and the practical aspects of the ratification procedures are identified. As a result, national policymakers are enabled to monitor and improve their national legal framework in the field of trade. In particular, officers within the relevant Ministries (Justice, Trade, Foreign Affairs, etc.) are in a position to plan and carry out the procedure to ratify the selected treaties.

Module 3: Assistance in integrating selected key treaties and/or model-laws into national law

This module is implemented with the contribution of selected international organisations that administer the relevant multilateral agreements and/or model laws. It consists of study visits of stakeholders to these organisations to address practical questions regarding accession to specific treaties or incorporation of international trade rules into national law. Workshops on treaty training are available. This module provides a link with relevant international organisations.

Module 4: Commitment from legal stakeholders

This module is oriented towards the legal stakeholders such as the Ministries of Trade and Justice, the Bar Associations and the academic community to go through the practical implications as a consequence of accession to trade treaties. This module reinforces the national legal network, updates the knowledge of the legal community with new trends and ensures that these trade rules are included in the curriculum of Law Schools. It takes the form of a national round-table to determine the consequences of accession to key multilateral treaties or to specific model laws. It may include the elaboration of a national curriculum for trade law at universities.

Module 5: Specialised modules according to country’s priorities

We recognise that different countries have different needs regarding the enhancement of their legal framework. Our added value is this versatility, as we offer tailor-made programmes (a two year programme or just one module within a larger project) to fit the context and the particular situation and audience of each country.

Our trade related technical assistance aims at creating with the local partners an environment conducive to business. This environment is only effective when a strong trade-related legal framework backs it.

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