Similar courts already established in Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Qatar. A court in Kazakhstan has opened in the framework of the modernization program with the participation of International financial center "Astana" in order to turn it into a leading financial hub in Central Asia.
"This is the first court of its kind in Eurasia, said Lord Woolf. — Kazakhstan has a long border with China and Russia, and China builds a new silk road that will pass directly through the territory of this country. For these reasons, the court can achieve high results."
All judges from Britain, and the court will use the laws of an International financial centre "Astana", which in fact are the English common law. "In that they have no experience, — said Wolfe. — This is an indicator of independence of the court and of the caliber of the judges. The independence of the guarantee amendments to the Constitution of the country."
Lord Woolf was actively involved in the establishment of the court in Doha, working with Christopher Campbell-Holt (Christopher Campbell-Holt), who was appointed Secretary of the new court. Previously, he worked as a lawyer in a law firm "Norton rose". In Doha Campbell-Holt worked for seven years. The idea in Kazakhstan is the same, but the culture of the two countries differ greatly. "Kazakhstan is a predominantly Muslim country, but there is a very liberal form of Islam, and people can practice any religion. Approximately 25% of the population professes Russian Orthodoxy. Sharia law in the courts are not being used," he says.
Regarding the situation of human rights in the country, Wolfe argues that there is equality of the sexes, and that Kazakhstan departs from the traditions of the supremacy of the man. The involvement of British judges indicates that this idea was also supported by the President Nazarbayev, who insisted on the implementation of reforms since 1991, when the country gained independence from Russia. "All judges are committed to the protection of human rights, although the court will consider other things," says Wolfe.
The court was opened in January, but at the initial stage the main emphasis will be on training local judges and lawyers. This will be the first-tier Tribunal and the court of appeal in which Lord Woolf will meet periodically. Will also fast track small claims. The court will be considered standard commercial and contractual disputes. We will also create a new international arbitration centre, and its first Chairman will be appointed a Queen's counsel Barbara Dohmann (Barbara Dohmann).
What it might mean for the Eurasian disputes that are currently pending in London? Wolfe agrees that until the new court will hear only a small portion of those cases that are usually seen in London. "But this in no way detracts from the dignity of our commercial court; on the contrary, his role increases, as he works in that part of the world where this tradition is missing."
Wolfe adds: "the President has shown foresight in creating this financial center. He wants the world to see how English common law is valid in his country, not only in the capital. It is in the coming years will spread throughout the society, setting an example of how to conduct business and to administer justice".
Among the invited British judges and lawyers sir Robin Jacob (Robin Jacob), sir Stephen Richards (Stephen Richards), sir Jack Beatson (Jack Beatson), sir Rupert Jackson (Jackson Rupert), QC Lord Faulks (Lord Faulks), QC Andrew Spink (Spink Andrew), Royal lawyer Tom Montagu-Smith (Tom Montagu-Smith) and Patricia Edwards (Patricia Edwards). Bitson, and Jackson will take up their positions after retiring from the court of appeal, what will happen in this and next month, respectively. The Advisory Council will be headed by QC Michael Blair (Michael Blair).
The judges will come to Kazakhstan five times a year. They are all sworn in at a special ceremony, and the oath that is reminiscent of that which they accepted in Britain. They will gown the color of the Kazakh flag blue with gold.
The diplomatic benefits of such a move are quite clear. "The court will contribute to the spread of English commercial law and the recognition of the importance of the rule of law, says wolf. — It will strengthen the links between this rapidly developing country in Central Asia, and the United Kingdom, and they will contact us for advice and guidance". The International financial center "Astana" will be much more likely to succeed if investors realize that there is a safe environment and a court that adheres to the rule of law.
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