This Module overviews the main legal developments concerning international economic relations over the last decade. It addresses both theoretical and practical issues from two standpoints: public international law and private comparative law. From the former perspective, this Module focuses on the dynamics of international cooperation in the trade and investment spheres, at the multilateral and regional levels. It specifically concerns some topics emerging in international trade law, such as trade facilitation, confrontation between developed and emerging countries in the WTO dispute settlement, and the new wave of regional deals. It also gives account of traditional issues in international investment law, such as State contracts and investors’ legitimate expectations, as they have gained momentum before international arbitral tribunals and national courts. The status of State-owned enterprises also requires close attention.
From the latter perspective, the module introduces a wide-variety of contractual and regulatory issues that arise in the theory and practice of international contracts. The module specifically concerns some of the most relevant trends and challenges in the field, precisely, it examines the following topics: key-examples of international and regional harmonization projects; the role played by private international law instruments with respect to international contracts (particularly, the CISG); and the dynamics of competition among different Contract Laws in the global marketplace. In the 2015 edition of the LLM Trade Law, the module also includes a Case Study about boilerplate clauses in international contracts, their goals and pitfalls in a comparative perspective (Common Law and Civil Law).