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World Bank Group Helps Strengthen Cambodia’s Commercial Dispute System with Arbitrator Training

Phnom Penh, Cambodia, June 15, 2010— The Investment Climate Advisory Services of the World Bank Group is training more than 50 candidates to become Cambodia’s first commercial arbitrators, who will help resolve business disputes and boost confidence in the country’s commercial system.
Upon successful completion of the training program, participants will be eligible for registration with the National Arbitration Center that will be established by August 2010.  The center will be Cambodia’s first alternative dispute resolution mechanism, allowing businesses to resolve commercial disputes more quickly and inexpensively than through the court system.
The Cambodian Ministry of Commerce today launched the Phnom Penh training, which includes sessions on national commercial law and arbitration skills.  Both Cambodian nationals and international participants come from a wide range of backgrounds and were selected by a joint commission that comprises representatives from the Cambodian government and the business community.
“The selection and training of Cambodia’s first commercial arbitrators are an important step toward building an effective and independent institution for resolving business disputes,” said Cham Prasidh, Senior Minister and Minister of Commerce.  “We believe the National Arbitration Center will help bolster confidence in the commercial system, which is crucial for promoting investment and economic growth.”
A less bureaucratic and speedier arbitration system is expected to encourage companies to do more business, as it reduces the legal risks associated with business partners and transactions.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is assisting the training program as part of its overall support for the establishment and operation of the National Arbitration Center.  IFC’s assistance is funded in part by the European Union.
Julia Brickell, IFC Resident Representative in Cambodia, said, “The availability of commercial arbitration is vital to underpinning investor confidence and economic development, thus IFC is committed to working with the Ministry of Commerce, the private sector, and other key stakeholders to sustain the National Arbitration Center.”
Supporting the National Arbitration Center is part of IFC Advisory Services in the Mekong delivered in partnership with the European Union, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and Switzerland.
About the Investment Climate Advisory Services of the World Bank Group
The Investment Climate Advisory Services of the World Bank Group helps governments implement reforms to improve their business environment, and encourage and retain investment, thus fostering competitive markets, growth and job creation. Funding is provided by the World Bank Group (IFC, MIGA, and the World Bank) and over 15 donor partners working through the multi-donor FIAS platform.