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IFC and Vietnam’s Supreme People’s Court Promote Commercial Arbitration and Mediation to Improve Business Environment

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, December 15, 2017 —IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and the Vietnam’s Supreme People’s Court today launched the ‘Judicial Manual for Commercial Mediation and Arbitration’. The manual aims to help judges adopt a consistent and predictable approach in the application of national legal regulations on arbitration and mediation-related matters, building investors’ trust and improving the country’s business environment.
Vietnam is a signatory to many international treaties governing international trade and investment, including the 1958 New York Convention on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards since 1995. An international framework aimed at harmonizing international arbitration law and increasing predictability in recognition and enforcement, its application by national courts is an important reference point for foreign businesses to consider business engagements with Vietnam.
At a time when the country is accelerating its pace to be integrated into the global economy, Vietnam wants to ensure consistency between the Vietnamese legislative and regulatory framework and international regulations on commercial dispute resolution.
Result of a significant effort, this comprehensive manual interprets key legal concepts and terms, elaborating on notions that are particular to arbitration and mediation. It also explains concepts that are crucial for issues related to alternative dispute resolution. Additionally, the manual offers a how-to on applying arbitration laws in a uniform manner. Alongside, it offers examples to help judges draw from judicial practice of other countries, which have dealt with similar issues.
“We hope that this manual will serve as a practical desk guide for judges to better understand the legal regulations and apply them properly to efficiently resolve arbitration and mediation-related matters under the jurisdiction of the People’s Courts,” said Nguyen Thuy Hien, Deputy Chief Justice of the Supreme People’s Court.
Introduced in a roadshow covering 3 major business cities of Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City, the manual intends to serve as a reference point, helping judges to apply the law consistently across courts to resolve arbitral issues with regard to new regulations in the Civil Procedural Code 2015. The code was amended to ensure consistency between Vietnamese legislative and regulatory framework and the regime under the New York Convention.
“The rule of law and its enforcement is crucial for improved business environment,” said Kyle Kelhofer, IFC Country Manager for Vietnam, Cambodia and Lao PDR. “Businesses and investors need clarity on rights and procedures to enforce contracts in Vietnam. When something goes wrong, both parties should know what to expect from the legal and arbitration system.”
Developed in partnership with the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), the manual will be a significant step towards making Vietnam a reliable destination for business and investment, where rights of investors are respected and exercised fairly.
About IFC
IFC, a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In FY17, we delivered a record $19.3 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to help end poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit
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