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International Rule of Law Issues Headline ABA Spring Meeting in Washington

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 17, 2011 — The _ Section of International Law will host one of the world’s largest annual gatherings of international legal experts at its 2011 Spring Meeting, which will focus on cross-border international legal issues. The meeting will be held April 5-9 at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, located at 400 New Jersey Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C.

On April 6, general counsel of the U.S. Copyright Office, David Carson, will present the luncheon keynote address. He will speak about the challenges of copyright law in the digital age. Thomas Buergenthal, retired judge of the International Court of Justice, will speak during the April 7 luncheon. His remarks are expected to be titled “International Courts and the Transformation of International Law.” Other conference presenters include representatives from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, office of U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (NY), U.S. International Trade Commission, and others.

More than 1,000 international law practitioners, scholars, corporate counsels, government and regulatory lawyers, and representatives of nongovernmental organizations from some 50 countries will be in attendance.

The agenda includes more than 80 programs on international business, energy and environment, and international rule of law and development. The following are among the sessions relating to international rule of law.

“African Growth and Opportunity Act 10 Years Later: What Have We Done, Where Are We and Where Should We Go from Here?” Panelists — distinguished Africa experts and Washington insiders from both the public and private sectors — will answer questions about the African Growth and Opportunity Act, including: What has worked? What hasn’t? and, Is it a success or failure? Panelists will give their personal and professional views on this landmark legislation passed in 2000, and will consult their crystal balls as to where AGOA will take us in the next 10 years.
April 6, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

“Haiti’s Reconstruction: A Year After the Earthquake. Have the Haitian People’s Voices Been Heard?”  More than a year after the earthquake, Haiti’s reconstruction continues to present governance challenges and opportunities. Many international aid community resources to support the reconstruction were made through the 2010 Donor’s Conference. This program will evaluate how much has been achieved; whether the concerns and demands of the Haitian people been included in the reconstruction of the country; whether donor pledges translated into visible governance results; and how international efforts are contributing to lasting stability, governance, development and growth.
April 6, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

“Home Field Advantage: Domestic Preferences in Government Procurement and Obligations under International Agreements” With jobs at a premium in the worldwide-recessed economy, domestic policymakers face a great deal of pressure to ensure that government spending leads to domestic employment while abiding with trade commitments that limit protectionism in government procurement. A panel will address how government procurement laws implement domestic preferences, friction between domestic preferences, and past and future policy developments that resolve or attempt to resolve the tension.
April 6, 4:30 – 6 p.m.

“The Response: Academy Award Shortlisted Film Takes You Inside the Guantanamo Military Tribunals” The program will begin with a brief orientation of military tribunals as they have developed since the Revolutionary War. This will be followed by a screening of The Response, a 30-minute docudrama based on actual transcripts of the Guantanamo Bay tribunals. The Response was shortlisted for the 2010 Academy Awards and named the 2009 AA Silver Gavel Award. A panel discussion will follow, featuring the actors and expert commentary.
April 6, 4:30 – 6 p.m.

“Current International Legal Developments:  Roundtable Discussion with the Office of the Legal Adviser” Panelists will include feature representatives from the State Department’s Office of Legal Adviser, who will discuss a number of challenging legal issues faced by the Obama administration as it implements its foreign policy agenda.  Issues to be addressed include the balance between government openness and national security concerns (states secrets, WikiLeaks, e.g.); greater U.S. government participation in international forums (Human Rights Council, International Criminal Court, e.g.); arms control and sanctions on Iran; and U.S. government compliance with its law of armed conflicts obligations in the ongoing war on terror.
April 7, 9 – 10:30 a.m.

“Re-Imagining the Role of General Counsel in International Business” Panelists will encourage general counsel to think of themselves not just as legal officers, but as diplomats. Guests will discuss how company-to-government advocacy, economic and political literacy, and corporate citizenship open up new frontiers for corporate counsel.
April 7, 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

“What is Next in the Practice of Law in Latin America? Capitalizing Opportunities and Negotiating Challenges” Speakers from an array of Latin American countries will explain the recent developments affecting their own individual practices, and discuss opportunities and challenges in each of their own jurisdictions. There will be particular emphasis on the efforts of lawyers and law firms to preserve the rule of law during the last decade when Latin America has witnessed appreciable political changes.
April 7, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

“The Changing Landscape for Foreign Private Equity Investments in China: Challenges and Opportunities” In the wake of the development of China’s private financial industry during the past several years, coupled with legal developments, investing in China has become more feasible. Under these recent developments, foreign private equity firms can now set up onshore renminbi funds, which was previously not possible.  Panelists will bring particular expertise in the structuring and execution of private equity investments in China from both the practitioner’s and the professional portfolio advisor’s perspectives.
April 7, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

“Hot Topics in International Trade Law” Panelists will talk about recent World Trade Organization disputes, including the latest installment of the Boeing-Airbus dispute and its impact on other industries; pending U.S. trade legislation, its purpose and impact and whether it is likely to pass in 2011; and current international trade policy issues, pending free trade agreements and the Obama administration’s efforts to enforce trade laws.
April 7, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

“Evolution of Environmental Rule of Law in China and India” Speakers will focus on the environmental legal framework, regulatory system and the future outlook for China and India, and how these can impact the broader international community. The role of international cooperation by governments, NGOs and industry will be covered.
April 7, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

“Measuring Compliance with the Rule of Law: Why does it Make a Difference?” Panelists drawn from various disciplines and countries will test the premise that a Rule of Law Index, developed by the World Justice Project — whose mission is to lead a global, multidisciplinary effort to strengthen the rule of law for the development of communities of opportunity and equity — can provide policy leaders with a powerful new tool to promote action plans to advance the rule of law worldwide.
April 7, 4:30 – 6 p.m.

“Power and Infrastructure Development and Finance in Sub-Saharan Africa: Opportunities and Challenges” Panelists will address the opportunities and challenges of developing and financing infrastructure and power projects in Africa from the perspectives of development institutions, developers, infrastructure funds and government institutions. The program will include an interactive survey of the differences and similarities in projects across countries and in different sectors of Africa.
April 7, 4:30 – 6 p.m.

“On the Rim of the Abyss: Military Intervention to Neutralize a Potential Nuclear Threat” Panelists will discuss whether international controls exist to prevent nuclear weapons from falling into the wrong hands within a sovereign nation at a time when many wonder whether Taliban, al Qaeda, North Korea or an aggressive Iranian regime will obtain them. Experts will discuss whether an obligation or right to intervene militarily exists; what constitutes a loss of control by a responsible regime and who is charged with making that determination; and whether a moral or ethical imperative to intervene exists to prevent a takeover of nuclear weapons by rogue elements.  Panelists will also discuss the scenario, means and legal justifications of a pre-emptive nuclear strike.
April 7, 4:30 – 6 p.m.

“Immigration Reform and the Corporate Employer: A Cross-Border Nightmare and the Third Rail of U.S. Politics” Guests will canvas the current immigration policies that impact business and cross-border movement of personnel, and will analyze today’s political environment, increasing enforcement and scrutiny, and proposals made by the Obama administration and Congress for immigration reform, concentrating on the business impact.  
April 7, 4:30 – 6 p.m.

“China’s Litigation, Judiciary and Enforcement:  Fact or Fiction” Panelists will speak to the present realities of the Chinese judicial and administrative system, and explain how to maintain good business practices and avoid indictable ones, especially in complex situations.
April 8, 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

“Doing Business in IndiaNew Developments” New corporate and regulatory changes implemented in India seek to help drive economic growth in that nation.  What do those changes mean and how they will impact those doing business in India? The program will look at the pitfalls, enforcement mechanism and implications on business, and provide tips on effective compliance programs.
April 8, 2:30 – 4:00 p.m.

For more information about the 2011 Spring Meeting, visit http://www2.americanbar.org/calendar/section-of-international-law-2011-spring-meeting/Documents/PreMeetingBrochureMailer.MeetingAgenda.pdf.

For media credentialing, please contact Alexandra Buller at .  This event is free and open to members of the press.

ABA International was founded in 1933 and leads the development of international legal policy, the promotion of the rule of law, and the education of international law practitioners. It is the only ABA entity that focuses exclusively on international legal issues. ABA International has over 23,000 members in 90 countries, including 1500 in-house counsel. The section has more than 60 committees, task forces, and working groups devoted to substantive legal issues or focused on geographic areas all over the world, monitoring and disseminating information on international policy developments that effect international legal practice.

With nearly 400,000 members, the _ is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.

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    ... International Rule of Law Issues Headline ABA Spring Meeting in Washington WASHINGTON, D.C., March 17, 2011 — The _ Section of International Law will host one of the world’s largest annual gatherings of international legal experts at its 2011 Spring Meeting, which will focus on cross-border international legal issues. The meeting will be held April 5-9 at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, located at 400 New Jersey Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. Read more on _ ...