26 June 2009

UN Commission on International Trade Law to Hold 42nd Session in Vienna, 29 June-17 July 2009

To Adopt Notes on Cooperation, Communication and Coordination in Cross-Border Insolvency Proceedings

VIENNA, 26 June (UN Information Service) - The finalization and adoption of UNCITRAL Notes on cooperation, communication and coordination in cross-border insolvency proceedings will be a key topic for consideration by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), as it meets in Vienna for its 42nd session from 29 June - 17 July 2009.

Finalization and adoption of UNCITRAL Notes

The purpose of these Notes is to provide guidance for practitioners and judges on practical aspects of cooperation and communication in cross-border insolvency cases, i.e. cases involving insolvency proceedings in multiple States where the insolvent debtor has assets or where some of the debtor's creditors are not from the State in which the insolvency proceedings have commenced. The guidance is based on a description of collected experience and practice and focuses on the use and negotiation of cross-border agreements. The Notes will provide an analysis of a number of cross-border agreements, ranging from written agreements approved by courts to oral arrangements between parties to the insolvency proceedings that have been entered into in cross-border insolvency cases over the last decade. The Notes are not intended to be prescriptive, but rather to illustrate how the resolution of issues and conflicts that might arise in cross-border insolvency cases could be facilitated by the use of such agreements, tailored to meet the specific needs of each case and the particular requirements of applicable law.

The practical application of the Notes was discussed at the 8th Multinational UNCITRAL/International Association of Restructuring, Insolvency & Bankruptcy Professionals (INSOL)/World Bank Judicial Colloquium held in June 2009, prior to the 42nd session of the Commission.

Other topics to be discussed

The Commission will also consider progress reports from its working groups on topics including: progress made towards revision of the 1994 Model Law on Procurement of Goods, Construction and Services; preparation of the Annex to the Legislative Guide on Secured Transactions dealing with security rights in intellectual property; consideration of the impact of insolvency on a security right in intellectual property; and revision of the 1976 UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules. The agenda of the session also includes discussion of possible future work in the areas of electronic commerce, transport law and commercial fraud. Participants are expected to discuss progress of work of the World Customs Organization (WCO)-UNCITRAL Joint Legal Task Force on Coordinated Border Management incorporating the International Single Window and consider proposals for future work relating to, among other things, electronic transfer of rights and documents and online dispute resolution in cross-border e-commerce transactions.

The Commission is anticipated to consider and recommend the use in international trade of the 2007 revision of the Uniform Customs and Practice for documentary credit (UCP 600) adopted by the International Chamber of Commerce.

Progress on monitoring implementation of the 1958 New York Convention, the status and promotion of UNCITRAL legal texts, technical cooperation and assistance to law reform and working methods of UNCITRAL are also scheduled for discussion.


The Commission is composed of 60 Member States elected by the United Nations General Assembly. Membership is structured so as to be representative of the world's geographic regions and its principal economic and legal systems. Members of the Commission are elected for terms of six years, the terms of half members expiring every three years.

Current members are: Algeria, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belarus, Benin, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Fiji, France, Gabon, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Latvia, Lebanon, Madagascar, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Paraguay, Poland, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Thailand, Uganda, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United States of America, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of) and Zimbabwe.

The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) is the core legal body of the United Nations system in the field of international trade law. Its mandate is to remove legal obstacles to international trade by progressively modernizing and harmonizing trade law. It prepares legal texts in a number of key areas such as international commercial dispute settlement, electronic commerce, insolvency, international payments, sale of goods, transport law, procurement and infrastructure development. UNCITRAL also provides technical assistance to law reform activities, including assisting Member States to review and assess their law reform needs and to draft the legislation required to implement UNCITRAL texts. The UNCITRAL Secretariat is located in Vienna, Austria, and maintains a website at www.uncitral.org.

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For further information, please contact:

Jenny Clift
Senior Legal Officer
UNCITRAL Secretariat
Email: jenny.clift@uncitral.org