The Electronic Communications Convention entered in force on 1 March 2013 and aims at facilitating the use of electronic communications in international trade by assuring that contracts concluded and other communications exchanged electronically are as valid and enforceable as their traditional paper-based equivalents.
Sri Lanka will become the seventh ratifying State and the second in the Asia Pacific Region, following the ratification by Singapore in 2010. China, Philippines, Republic of Korea and Saudi Arabia are the other Asia Pacific signatories to the Convention, but are yet to ratify it.
This Convention is particularly relevant because of certain formal requirements contained in widely adopted international trade law treaties, such as the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (the "NewYorkConvention") and the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) that may pose obstacles to the wide use of electronic communications. The Electronic Communications Convention is an enabling treaty whose effect is to remove those formal obstacles by establishing equivalence between electronic and written form. Moreover, the Electronic Communications Convention serves additional purposes further facilitating the use of electronic communications in international trade. Thus, the Convention is intended to strengthen the harmonization of the rules regarding electronic commerce and foster uniformity in the domestic enactment of UNCITRAL model laws relating to electronic commerce, as well as to update and complement certain provisions of those model laws in light of recent practice. Finally, the Convention may provide those countries not having yet adopted provisions on electronic commerce with modern, uniform and carefully drafted legislation.
For further information, please contact:
Regional Centre For Asia And The Pacific UNCITRAL
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