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CCJ signs MOU on harmonising business law in Caribbean

Posted in: Regional News | 20 May 2016 | 4142


    Port of Spain, CCJ – The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) has signed an Agreement of Cooperation with ACP Legal Association, which is based in Guadeloupe and executes the Organisation for Harmonisation of Business Law in the Caribbean (OHADAC) Project, at the Court’s headquarters in Port of Spain.


    The Agreement was signed on behalf of the CCJ by Court President, The Rt Hon Sir Dennis Byron, and on behalf of ACP Legal by its President, Judge Catherine Sargenti. The brief ceremony was witnessed by French Ambassador His Excellency Hédi Picquart.

    Under the Agreement, the CCJ in recognising the goals of the OHADAC Project will lend such support as exists within its mandate towards achieving the implementation of a harmonised business law framework in the Caribbean. The OHADAC Project aims to consolidate the economic integration of the entire Caribbean, following similar reforms undertaken in Africa. The Project seeks to facilitate increased trade and promote international investment by providing a unified law and alternative dispute resolution methods. It is the ultimate goal of the harmonisation process to have a unified law that is internationally respected, recognised and utilised.

    The signing of the Agreement represents the culmination of discussions between the two organisations following a two-day official visit by a delegation from ACP Legal Association/the OHADAC Project. The delegation consisted of Judge Sargenti, President of ACP Legal and leader of the OHADAC Project; Dr Jean Alain Penda, OHADAC’s Project Manager; and Mr Keats Compton the co-founder of ACP Légal OECS Inc.

    Judges of the CCJ and members of the ACP Legal/OHADAC Project delegation. (Photo via CCJ)

    Sir Dennis, in welcoming the delegation, pointed out the benefits of the collaboration.

    We see the collaboration with the team from the OHADAC Project as being yet another way that the CCJ can play a significant role in deepening regional integration and in supporting economic development throughout the Caribbean.”

    The President thanked the French Ambassador for attending the event noting that his presence had served to give further symbolic significance to the CCJ’s efforts to promote wider Caribbean integration initiatives.

    The delegation also engaged in discussions regarding collaboration with the Caribbean Academy for Law and Court Administration (CALCA), the educational arm of the CCJ, concerning its conference in October, 2016. CALCA, in association with the General Legal Council (Jamaica), the Bar Association of St. Maarten and OHADAC, will host its 4th Biennial Conference on Law in St. Maarten with the theme ‘Law at the Cross-roads: Reappraising the Role of Common Law and Civil Law Practitioners in Transnational Development’.

    The conference will offer more than twenty-five interactive sessions over two days and will include discussion on cutting edge legal issues that should prove critical to legal professionals, regulators, government officials, business and trade development professionals, and experts working in the financial sector.

    Mr Justice Anderson, the Chairman of CALCA, noted that the conference would be among the first concrete outputs of the Agreement between the CCJ and ACP Legal and that, “the organising committee believes that the conference will be enhanced by discussion of the harmonisation of commercial laws and the possible impact on regional trade. We look forward to the presentations from OHADAC and our other distinguished presenters.” (Caribbean Court of Justice Press Release)