Prof. Xue Presented at UNCITRAL RCAP Virtual Knowledge Sharing Event

Virtual Knowledge Sharing (II) UNCITRAL Texts and International Trade in the Digital Era”, co-organized by UNCITRAL RCAP, the Electronic Transactions Development Agency (ETDA) of Thailand, and Bolliger & Company (Thailand) Ltd., was held on 2 June 2021 from 1.30 – 4.45 pm Bangkok time (UTC+7) via Zoom.

The event was a virtual knowledge-sharing platform to provide an overall understanding of enabling legal frameworks for digital trade for Thai government agencies, other domestic stakeholders, and regional participants. More than 150 participants from 20 Asian countries (like Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Bangladesh) joined the event and raised many questions.

The event invited 10 experts to reviewed the electronic transactions law, policies, and practices at international level, including UNCITRAL e-commerce texts such as the ECC and MLETR. The analysis of information from this activity would provide a solid basis for the developing countries to prepare for the on-going international negotiation on digital economy at various international arenas, such as WTO and UNCITRAL.

Prof. Xue gave a keynote speech on legal facilitation of cross-border e-commerce through the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). Prof. Xue explained the e-commerce chapters/provisions in the FTAs and dedicated Digital Economy Partnership Agreements (DEPAs) and summarized the four legal clusters to facilitate cross-border e-commerce. Particularly, not only trade of digital goods but the sales of goods in e-commerce involves transferring trade-related data across border. Although there are established legal frameworks on international trade law and paperless trade, lack of worldwide-recognized international laws on cross-border transition prevents the sustainable developments of international digital trade. Three different models have emerged from the respective FTAs (CPTPP, EU Partnership Agreements and RCEP). The minimalist approach that allows the MSes to exercise the indisputable rights on data flow and localization requirement regarding the essential security interests is entirely different from the enabling model that clearly prohibits such requirements. Although both models try to prevent unnecessary burden on e-commerce, the newly established indisputable right obviously goes beyond the traditional scope of legitimate policy objectives. Prof. Xue concludes that the WTO Joint Statement Initiative on digital economy and e-commerce is facing to the frictions of different models and challenges of inclusion of developing countries and LDCs.

Virtual Knowledge Sharing (II) UNCITRAL Texts
and International Trade in the Digital Era
Wednesday, 2 June 2021
8.30 am – 12.30 pm Vienna time/1.30 – 5.30 pm Bangkok time/
3.30 – 7.30 pm Seoul time