Today, Kazakhstan-based Astana International Financial Centre Court (the AIFC Court) and International Arbitration Centre (IAC) and Uzbekistan-based Westminster International University Tashkent (WIUT) signed a framework agreement of cooperation and launched the use of a new hearing room in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
The Agreement was signed by Mr. Christopher Campbell-Holt, Registrar and Chief Executive of the AIFC Court and IAC, and Mr. Bakhrom Mirkasimov, WIUT Rector. The agreement creates opportunities for commercial parties in disputes to participate in AIFC Court and IAC hearings from an international standard hearing room at WIUT in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The cooperation also enables students of WIUT to participate in internships at the AIFC Court and IAC, with the possibility of further employment at AIFC resident companies. In addition, students will participate in the AIFC Court and IAC legal education programmes and compete in the international standard Moot competitions organised annually in March and October.
In the framework of the visit to Tashkent, the AIFC Court and IAC met with the Uzbekistani legal and business communities and presented an introduction to commercial dispute resolution in the wider Eurasia region, services offered by the AIFC Court and IAC, and further opportunities for businesses in Uzbekistan seeking to invest in Kazakhstan.
Christopher Campbell-Holt, Registrar and Chief Executive of the AIFC Court and IAC commented:
“We are excited to develop our cooperation with Westminster International University Tashkent (WIUT) and to broaden our presence in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, through this cooperation. WIUT is one of the leading universities in Eurasia and we look forward to welcoming its students to our international standard internship programme which has previously been experienced by more than 80 students from other universities. We also look forward to offering occasional case hearings from the international standard WIUT premises in Tashkent as we continue to further expand our dispute resolution services to a broad spectrum of businesses and investors beyond Astana".
Bakhrom Mirkasimov, WIUT Rector commented:
“We are happy to sign this agreement, which advanced our student participation in moot competitions at the AIFC. It provides students and graduates opportunities of involvement in the work at the AIFC Court and International Arbitration Centre at the AIFC with further legal assistance to the companies operating within the AIFC, where English common law applies. WIUT also raises awareness of the work of the AIFC among students, the academic community and legal professionals and will be hosting activities of the AIFC at WIUT. We appreciate our further cooperation".
Westminster International University in Tashkent (WIUT) is the first international university located in the heart of Central Asia to offer a Western-style education with UK qualifications. WIUT offers a wide range of programmes, all in English, academic and research activities, as well as social events. Independent learning is an essential part of the UK education system, and WIUT is no exception. WIUT students can often be found in the Learning Resource Centre (LRC), computer rooms and innovation labs, working on projects and discussing course content with their peers. Other times, students may be found making the most of the University’s exceptional sports facilities or engaging in the many social and cultural events organized by the Students’ Union.
About the AIFC, the AIFC Court and the IAC
The Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) is an independent jurisdiction that started operations in 2018. In accordance with the Development Strategy until 2025, the key focus of the AIFC is to consolidate as a universal platform connecting the countries of the EAEU, Central Asia and the Caucasus. www.aifc.kz
The AIFC Court is an independent legal entity. It has its own procedural rules modelled on English common law procedures and leading international practice. The AIFC Court is separate and independent from the courts of the Republic of Kazakhstan. It consists of two tiers: a Court of First Instance, which includes a specialist division known as the Small Claims Court; and a Court of Appeal. It has exclusive jurisdiction over disputes arising out of the activities and operations of the AIFC and jurisdiction in the case of other disputes in which all parties agree in writing to give the AIFC Court jurisdiction. It does not have jurisdiction in relation to disputes that are of a criminal or administrative nature. It applies the most up to date and efficient case management practices. https://court.aifc.kz/
The International Arbitration Centre (IAC) is an independent legal entity. It has its own procedural rules modelled on best international practice. It has its own panel of leading international arbitrators and mediators having many years of arbitration and mediation experience in commercial law, including oil and gas, trade, construction, energy, financial services, banking, Islamic finance, insurance, and intellectual property. IAC arbitration awards are recognised and enforceable in Kazakhstan and internationally. https://iac.aifc.kz/