Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Strengthening economic and legal infrastructure can bring significant benefits to APEC-member economies through economic growth and improvements in living standards, experts said at a meeting held on Friday in HCM City.
International delegates took part in the APEC Economic Committee’s Friends of the Chair on Strengthening Economic and Legal Infrastructure (SELI) meeting at the third Senior Officials Meeting (SOM 3) now being held in the city.
Representatives from international organisations, including the UN’s Commission on International Trade Law, the World Bank and International Institute for the Integration of Investment Law, also attended the event.
SELI serves as a network of focal points for legal advisors and officials to exchange information on economic and legal infrastructure relevant to economic developments, including sharing of their laws and practices in relevant fields.
One of the major issues discussed at the meeting was the possibility of establishing an APEC co-operation framework on online dispute resolution for transactions related to micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Speaking on the sidelines of the meeting, Dr Jams Ding, meeting chair and principal government counsel of the International Law Division at the Department of Justice in Hong Kong, said: “We regularly organise discussions and workshops and conduct studies to help member economies improve their economic legal infrastructure to meet international standards.”
“We also discussed the possibility to expand an online dispute resolution project to cover other aspects of modern technologies, such as the use of technologies to assist member economies in contract management and contract dispute,” he added.
The online dispute project aims to help SMEs in cross-border transaction and e-commerce cases.
“What we shared at the meeting is, however, not a commitment. It’s just a recommendation or an option for member economies to consider so they can make use of international standards to improve their economic legal infrastructure,” he told Việt Nam News.
Establishing good governance practices involves improving laws and building the capacity of institutions and individuals to apply and enforce the laws.
SELI also aims to enhance in-depth understanding of international economic law, including relevant international instruments such as the Hague Convention and the UN Commission on International Trade Law Instruments.
The APEC Economic Committee on Friday also discussed the regional economic outlook and digital economy. — VNS