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Revisiting the Autonomous Contract  1  (Draft 0.90 - 2000.08.27 ;)

Transnational contract "law", trends and supportive structures

1. Reinforcing trends: borderless technologies, global economy, transnational legal solutions?

2. Common Property - advocating a common commercial highway

3. Modelling the private international commercial law infrastructure

4. The foundation for transnational private contract law, arbitration

5. "State contracted international law" and/or "institutionally offered lex"? CISG and PICC as examples

6. Contract Lex design. Questions of commonweal

6.1 The neutrality of contract law and information cost
6.2 Justifying mandatory loyalty principles

7. Problems beyond uniform texts

7.1 In support of four objectives
7.2 Improving the predictability, certainty and uniform application of international and transnational law
7.3 The Net and information sharing through transnational databases
7.4 Judicial minimalism promotes democratic jurisprudential deliberation
7.5 Non-binding interpretative councils and their co-ordinating guides can provide a focal point for the convergence of ideas - certainty, predictability, and efficiency
7.6 Capacity Building

8. Marketing of transnational solutions

9. Tools in future development

10. As an aside, a word of caution

11. Endnote




SiSU Metadata, document information


SiSU Manifest, alternative outputs etc.

Revisiting the Autonomous Contract

Transnational contracting, trends and supportive structures

Ralph Amissah

copy @ Lex Mercatoria

Revisiting the Autonomous Contract (Draft 0.90 - 2000.08.27 ;)

Transnational contract "law", trends and supportive structures

3. Modelling the private international commercial law infrastructure

Apart from the study of "laws" or the legal infrastructure that has been created, there are a multitude of players involved in their creation and their efforts may be regarded as being in the nature of systems modelling. Of interest to this paper is the subset of activity of a few organisations that relate to the provision of underpinnings for the foundation of a successful transnational contract/sales law. These are not amongst the more controversial legal infrastructure modelling activities, and contextually represent a small but significant part in simplifying international commerce and trade.  14 

Briefly viewing the wider picture, several institutions are involved as independent actors in systems modelling of the transnational legal infrastructure. Their roles and mandates and the issues they address are conceptually different. These include relevant United Nations organs and affiliates such as the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL),  15  the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)  16  and recently the World Trade Organisation (WTO),  17  along with other institutions such as the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT),  18  the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC),  19  the Hague Conference on Private International Law.  20  They identify areas that would benefit from an international or transnational regime and use various tools at their disposal, (including: treaties; model laws; conventions; rules and/or principles; standard contracts), to develop legislative "solutions" in the form of "hard" and "soft" law (and standard agreements and clauses) that they hope will be subscribed to.

A host of other institutions are involved in providing regional solutions  21  Specialised areas are also addressed by appropriately specialised institutions.  22  A result of globalisation is increased competition (also) amongst States, which are active players in the process, identifying and addressing the needs of their business communities over a wide range of areas and managing the suitability to the global economy of their domestic legal, economic, technological and educational  23  infrastructures. The role of States remains to identify what domestic structural support they must provide to be integrated and competitive in the global economy.

In addition to "traditional" contributors, the technology/commerce/law confluence provides new challenges and opportunities, allowing, the emergence of important new players within the commercial field, such as Bolero,  24  which, with the backing of international banks and ship-owners, offers electronic replacements for traditional paper transactions, acting as transaction agents for the electronic substitute on behalf of the trading parties. And of interest to this paper, the acceptance of the possibility of applying an institutionally offered lex has opened the door further for other actors including ad hoc groupings of the business community and/or universities to find ways to be engaged and actively participate in providing services for themselves and/or others in this domain.

 14. Look for instance at national customs procedures, and consumer protection.







 21. such as ASEAN ‹http://www.aseansec.org/› the European Union (EU) ‹http://europa.eu.int/› MERCOSUR ‹http://embassy.org/uruguay/econ/mercosur/› and North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) ‹http://www.nafta-sec-alena.org/english/nafta/

 22. e.g. large international banks; or in the legal community, the Business Section of the International Bar Association (IBA) with its membership of lawyers in over 180 countries. ‹http://www.ibanet.org/

 23. For a somewhat frightening peek and illuminating discussion of the role of education in the global economy as implemented by a number of successful States see Joel Spring, Education and the Rise of the Global Economy (Mahwah, NJ, 1998).

 24.http://www.bolero.org/› also ‹http://www.boleroassociation.org/

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( International Trade/Commercial Law & e-Commerce Monitor )

W3 since October 3 1993
1993 - 2010

started @The University of Tromsø, Norway, 1993
hosted by The University of Oslo, Norway, since 1998
in fellowship with The Institute of International Commercial Law,
Pace University, White Plains, New York, U.S.A.



Ralph Amissah

Lex Mercatoria