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2019年12月10日 星期二
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Chairs’ Statement of the China Forum on International Legal Cooperation

时间:2019-11-14 10:00  来源:International Department  责任编辑:att

    Chairs’ Statement of the China Forum
    on International Legal Cooperation

    (Guangzhou, China  November 11, 2019)

     

    Preface

     

    1.  From November 9-11, 2019, legal scholars and professionals from more than 40 countries and 4 international organizations attended the China Forum on International Legal Cooperation in Guangzhou, China, held by the China Law Society (CLS). They conducted extensive and in-depth discussions under the theme “Deepening China  International Legal Cooperation, Making Joint Contributions to the Belt and Road Initiative.” President Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to the forum. Wang Chen, member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and President of the CLS, attended the forum and delivered a keynote speech, and Li Xi, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Secretary of the CPC Guangdong Provincial Committee, attended and addressed the forum, with Chen Xunqiu, Secretary of the CPC Committee and Executive Vice-President of the CLS, and He Zhongyou, member of the Standing Committee and Secretary of the Political and Legal Affairs Commission of the CPC Guangdong Provincial Committee, as Chairs of the forum.


    2.  In 2013, President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping put forward the Belt and Road Initiative. This initiative has received positive response from the international community. The trade volume between China and other Belt and Road countries exceeded $6 trillion, and China invested more than $90 billion in the other countries along the Belt and Road. The Belt and Road Initiative and its principles of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits have been included in related resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly.
     

    3.  During the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation held from April 25-27, 2019, 38 heads of state and government as well as UN Secretary-General and Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund attended the Leaders’ Roundtable, 6,000-plus representatives from 150 countries and 92 international organizations attended the forum, and 283 deliverables were agreed on. The forum set the goal of high-quality cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative, which identified the priorities and direction for future cooperation in all areas.
     

    4.  Legal cooperation is an indispensable and important part of the Belt and Road cooperation, and rule of law is an indispensable and important foundation and guarantee for the Belt and Road Initiative. Intensifying Belt and Road legal cooperation is not only the responsibility of the legislative, law enforcement and judicial authorities of the participating parties, but also the mission of legal scholars, lawyers, arbitrators, mediators, notaries and in-house lawyers, which requires wide participation. It is recommended that all participating parties further enhance cooperation with international and regional organizations in related fields and intensify multi-level, multi-channel and comprehensive legal cooperation, in order to lay a solid legal foundation for the Belt and Road Initiative.
     

    Making Contributions to the Belt and Road Initiative by Creating an Enabling Environment of Investment


    5.  The implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative requires a peaceful and stable environment. It is called on and supported that the participating parties support and assist each other with equality, cultural affinity and empathy, upholding the principles of seeking common ground while reserving differences, promoting inclusiveness, mutual understanding, communication and dialogue, and pursuing interactions on an equal footing. All the parties will strengthen legal cooperation; foster thinking on rule of law, resolving differences through dialogue and settling disputes through discussions under rule of law; increase consensus on and mutual trust in rule of law; and then enhance political mutual trust, so that all participating parties work together to build a new model of international relations featuring mutual respect, fairness, justice and win-win cooperation, safeguard regional security and stability, and lay a solid foundation for mutually beneficial cooperation.


    6.  It is supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative further legal cooperation in ensuring cyber security, fighting transnational crimes, drug trafficking, terrorism, separatism and extremism, and enhancing joint law enforcement and public security. These measures will help create a favorable environment for promoting regional economic development and improving the wellbeing of the people.


    7.  It is supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative build a law-based and honest government with greater efforts and an investment environment for fair competition that is open for cooperation. The participating parties need to fulfill bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, establish binding mechanisms for honoring international agreements, improve laws and policies and enhance legal cooperation related to foreign investment, financing, taxation, labor, transportation, intellectual property rights and environmental protection, and check up on unreasonable provisions, subsidies and practices that impede fair competition and distort the market, so as to treat investors and operators from all countries on an equal basis, reduce and eliminate trade and investment barriers step by step, and improve the market-oriented, law-based and facilitated business environment.


    8.  It is supported that all participating parties improve “soft connectivity” of policies, rules and standards, so as to provide an institutional guarantee for facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration, people-to-people bonds and industrial cooperation. All participating parties are further supported in their efforts to enhance the connectivity and compatibility between technical standards systems in the construction of infrastructure and other fields. They will take account of their particular circumstances and their development needs and draw upon applicable international standards, in order to deepen international cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative. They are supported in their efforts to conduct multilateral and bilateral cooperation on accounting and auditing supervision, and to harmonize standards and provide equivalency in accounting and auditing, in order to provide structural safeguards for cross-border investment and financing activities and financial market connectivity.
     

    9.  Clean government is the moral principle and the legal red line that we should never cross in Belt and Road cooperation. It is called on and supported that all participating parties improve their legal systems and mechanisms and work together to foster a modern business environment that is corruption-free and efficient. We will improve supervision and management of and address risks in Belt and Road projects. We will establish standardized and transparent procedures for the trade of public resources. During tendering and bidding, construction and operational management of a project, we will abide by related laws and regulations, eliminate power rent-seeking and establish a sound market order. We will make our respective anti-corruption laws more coherent. In accordance with the United Nations Convention Against Corruption, the Beijing Initiative for the Clean Silk Road and other international conventions and related cooperation initiatives, we will create a closer and more convenient network for cooperation on judicial affairs and law enforcement, and facilitate the signing and fulfillment of bilateral extradition treaties and judicial assistance agreements.
     

    Making Contributions to the Belt and Road Initiative by Developing International Economic and Trade Rules of Higher Standards
     

    10.  Concerted efforts are called for from all participating parties to maintain the international system with the UN at its core, the international order underpinned by international law and the multilateral trading system centered around the World Trade Organization (WTO), firmly uphold multilateralism, fairness and justice, and oppose protectionism and unilateralism.
     

    11.  The WTO reform is supported and has our participation. We will work together to establish a fair, equitable and transparent system of international trade and investment rules, and to improve trade and investment liberalization and facilitation. It is supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative enter into negotiations to conclude high-standard free trade agreements, jointly open high-standard free trade zones, strengthen legal cooperation on customs, taxation and audit oversight, further lower tariffs and eliminate various non-tariff barriers. The purpose is to facilitate the flow of goods, capital, technology and personnel, power economic growth and create a broad space for it. Cooperation will be enhanced on rules related to visa application and customs clearance, in order to facilitate cross-border movement of people and goods.


    12.  It is supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative effectively prevent and properly settle, under the rule of law, trade and investment disputes in the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative, and fairly protect the legitimate rights and interests of all parties. All participating parties need to deepen cooperation in judicial affairs and law enforcement, explore the establishment of cooperation mechanism to strengthen mutual recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters and promote investigation and evidence collection in civil and commercial matters, so as to cooperate in areas of civil and commercial laws and regulations on the basis of international general practice in civil, commercial matters. More cooperation will be made to mitigate legal risks and avoid disputes effectively.
     

    13.  It is supported that all participating parties strengthen exchanges and cooperation regarding the ways and means of settling disputes other than by judicial settlement, such as mediation, arbitration and so on; the involved parties are encouraged to settle disputes through non-litigation methods such as mediation and arbitration. All participating parties are supported in their efforts to strengthen consultation and cooperation and resolve disputes through existing domestic and international dispute settlement mechanisms or institutions. Efforts will be made to explore the feasibility of establishing diversified dispute settlement system of rules or mechanisms in an equitable, efficient and convenient way that allow judicial settlement, mediation and arbitration to play their appropriate and effective roles and that meet the needs of the Belt and Road Initiative, including further discussion on establishing, if appropriate, treaty-based mechanisms or institutions.
     

    Making Contributions to the Belt and Road Initiative by Enhancing International Cooperation in Intellectual Property Protection


    14.  In pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative, we need to encourage innovation, and intellectual property is essential to innovation-driven development. It is supported that all participating parties respect intellectual property rights, effectively protect and utilize intellectual property, and build a sophisticated intellectual property protection system.
     

    15.  It is supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative fully improve their legal frameworks for protecting intellectual property, step up law enforcement, enhance protection of the lawful rights and interests of foreign intellectual property owners, stop forced technology transfer, improve protection of trade secrets, and crack down hard on violations of intellectual property in accordance with law, so as to foster a business environment that respects the value of knowledge.
     

    16.  It is supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative enhance cooperation in intellectual property protection, create an enabling environment for innovation, and promote technological exchanges and cooperation on the basis of market principles and the rule of law.
     

    Making Contributions to the Belt and Road Initiative by Regulating Investment Conduct of Enterprises
     

    17.  Full participation of more countries and companies in the Belt and Road Initiative is supported, thus expanding the pie of common interests. It is called on that enterprises from all participating countries respect the rule of law and follow universal international rules and standards in project construction, operation, procurement and tendering and bidding. The laws and regulations of the recipient countries must also be respected. Participating enterprises need to enhance their awareness of compliance, run their businesses with integrity and pursue fair competition; pay more attention to due diligence investigation and mitigate legal risks; respect cultural differences and local customs, pursue green and low-carbon development and eco-environmental protection, assume more social responsibilities, and contribute to sustainable local social and economic development.
     

    18.  It is called on and supported that all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative keep combating commercial bribery, increase anti-corruption education and training for enterprises, and encourage their enterprises to strengthen self-discipline, establish rule-based managerial systems, foster an enterprise culture that values integrity, monitor corruption risks and oppose commercial bribery.
     

    19.  It is supported that related government agencies of all parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative provide better legal service to their enterprises. The agencies need to help their enterprises understand the legal systems of recipient countries and regions, participate in the due diligence investigations for related commercial transactions of their enterprises, and conduct risk assessment, prevention and control to help their enterprises mitigate legal risks, and to provide quality and efficient legal service for their enterprises to participate in Belt and Road projects, for international trade in goods and services, cross-border e-commerce and market purchasing, and for new business formats and emerging industries including new-generation information technology, new energy and new materials.
     

    Prospects

    20.  It is called on and supported that related government agencies, think tanks, NGOs and universities in the legal field from all participating parties further engage in in-depth and diverse communication, dialogue, exchange and cooperation, focusing on the Belt and Road Initiative. Through holding symposiums and training programs, operating research projects and joint schools, jointly establishing legal research centers and talent training centers, and building law and personnel databases, all the parties can further their pragmatic cooperation in the fields of legal system, legal culture, legal service and legal education, and set up an interconnected circle of friends for Belt and Road legal cooperation, so as to realize high-quality legal cooperation and common prosperity in the rule of law of all participating countries.
     

    21.  We firmly believe that with the concerted efforts of all the parties participating in the Belt and Road Initiative, Belt and Road legal cooperation will, by upholding and following the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and international law, and by upholding and following the outlook on global governance of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits, be bound to attain continuous and fruitful results. Such cooperation will make greater contributions to building a community of shared future for humanity, to pushing for a more just and reasonable international governance system and to building an open, inclusive, clean and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security and common prosperity.

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