Issue date: 13 October 2009
Lawyers from the University of the West of England are working with Hanoi Law University (HLU) to increase levels of expertise on international trade law within Vietnam. The thirty-month collaboration is funded by the European Union and will begin in November 2009.
Project co-ordinator Elena Blanco of UWE's Bristol School of Law explained, “At present, universities in Vietnam lack highly qualified lecturers in international trade law, and funding for research activities in international trade law and policy is limited. This project aims to strengthen expertise in International Trade Law in Vietnam by helping them to build capacity in the number of trained experts and enhance the level of expertise.”
Among the groups who will benefit from the link-up are lecturers and students at HLU and other Vietnamese universities, lawyers working for the Vietnamese government agencies responsible for international trade policy and law making, and legal practitioners.
The project will begin by conducting a survey of training needs in international trade law of the private and public sectors in Vietnam. It will then provide training in international trade law for University staff, government agencies, legal practitioners and businesses in Vietnam, and curriculum development at HLU and other universities. The team will help develop resources such as an electronic library, online resource centre and online discussion forum in International Trade Law as well as an electronic journal on International Trade Law focusing on the needs of the Vietnamese legal and business community and government.
Assistant Vice-Chancellor Alan Bensted said, “This is a highly commendable and significant step in the development of a national infrastructure of legal provision within Vietnam, which reflects extremely well upon the efforts of all those involved in the project. It will enable a new, emerging economy, with one of the highest growth rates in the world, to capitalise upon its entry into the World Trade Organisation. It will do this by remedying the acute shortage of Anglo-American common law-trained international lawyers who are vital to the facilitation of international trade.
“Furthermore, it will enable UWE to advance its position, as one of the leading British educational providers in Vietnam, in providing widespread undergraduate education in the key areas of science and technology, built environment, business, and law. In particular, UWE proposes with HLU to introduce an undergraduate common law degree programme in the near future, the first of its kind in Vietnam.”
The project entitled 'Strengthening capacity in International Trade Law through training and research for Universities, Government Agencies, Legal Practitioners and Business in Vietnam' is funded by 204,412 euros from Europe Aid.