Reflections from WGII, by Harjit Singh

General Meeting of United Nations Commission on International Trade Law. Working group II (Dispute settlement) sixty- seventh session. 2- 6th Oct, 2017.

I did Commercial Law, Company Law, International arbitration and International Law as some of my Law subjects which I enjoyed immensely and being part of the observer group in the the UNCITRAL working group on conflict resolution in the United Nations in Vienna in October 2017 provided a most enlightening experience. Studying the Model Law in International Law last year seemed like a Law that has been discussed and written many many years ago and I did not comprehend how meetings have been held to update and change the instrument to make it easier for countries to use with the objective for it to be fair and to aid in the avoidance of conflict. It seems like a difficult task but to actually participate, as an observer in the instrument being developed and revised was an experience that I thoroughly enjoyed and understood.

The information I gathered as an observer is that the aim for the instrument is to be clear and comprehensible for all nations, to capture all concerns and to use simple language without diminishing the meaning or the intention of the article.  Some articles were discussed extensively especially article 4 so that it could explain comprehensively and exhaustively what it actually means.

Overall, it seemed like most participating nations seemed happy with the outcome of the meeting which was heading in the right direction and emphasis was made for the core elements of the instrument to be clear, simple and precise and for the concept not to be lost when interpreted by different languages and nations. There were previous points raised but it was agreed by most nations that the discussion in the previous meeting had led to the reason for change of certain words in the settlement agreement. Concern was raised to modification of the sub divisions of certain articles without it losing its concept and some changes were made to sentences for clarity.

It was a delightful experience listening to candidates from some nations being louder than others though diplomatically  but the overall aim was agreed by most nations. The meeting was conducted by all participating nations and chaired professionally and with diplomacy. I thoroughly enjoyed this valuable experience and I will be definitely will be involved in International law in the future.

I have just completed my Juris Doctor/ diploma of legal practice degree this week after an externship in China as my last subject, thus the delay in sending my reflection on the UNCITRAL meet in Vienna. I returned this week and all exam results came out this week. I am so happy in becoming a lawyer now.

By Harjit Singh




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