Bolstering international integration though electronic communications

09:17 | 08/05/2014 Investment

(VEN) - Membership of the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts is necessity for Vietnam. Vietnam Economic News’ Lan Anh spoke with Ministry of Industry and Trade’s E-commerce and Information Technology Department Director Tran Huu Linh about the issue.

Could you tell us about the benefits of joining the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts?

Joining the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts not only contributes to the realization of the country’s international trade and economic integration policies, but  also enhances Vietnam's harmonization of its laws to meet international norms.

In the short run, the joining will create a new step in the process of participating in international agreements on trade, enhance Vietnam’s trade-related integration in general and e-commerce-related integration in particular, through which to promote the improvement of domestic e-commerce laws to international standards. Our participation will help businesses reduce costs and shorten transaction times. It also creates conditions for dealing with international trade disputes and helps reduce the use of laws of other countries.

E-commerce is growing and it not straight forward to join the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts. What problems will Vietnam face?

Joining the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts will bring in significant benefits for Vietnam, including economic and legal benefits.

It will not only help Vietnam draft its own laws on electronic transactions compliant with those of other countries but also contribute to improving Vietnam’s laws on the use of electronic databases in contracts. With the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts, businesses can reduce costs and avoid disputes in the selection of a law for application.

However, Vietnam will likely face a number of difficulties with the accession of the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts due to the difference between domestic and foreign contract and e-commerce laws and the country’s inadequate human resources. Another problem is that the convention doesn’t cover newly created technologies like cloud computing technology and digital signatures. This is not only a problem for Vietnam but also other countries.

What does Vietnam need to prepare to join the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts?

It is important to improve business, judicial and legal awareness of and ability to apply the United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts in particular and international trade laws in general, as well develop human resources. Researching and keeping references on court and arbitration decisions of member countries and detailed instructions from the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) – the agency that drafted the convention will help make the convention’s application favorable and efficient./.

The United Nations Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts took effect on March 1, 2013. Eighteen countries signed the convention from January 16, 2006 to January 16, 2008, including countries that play a major role in international trade, such as China, the Republic of Korea, Russia, Singapore and the Philippines. Two more countries joined the convention in April 2014.

 

 

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