Introduction: International economic law governs the global economic action or the economic cooperation that exists between nations. Moreover, the concept of “International Economic Law” covers a wide range of topics. It is frequently broadly described to include a wide range of topics tend to range from the general international law of commerce to private international law of commerce/trade to specific areas of international commercial policies and legal finance and investment law.
definition of International Economic Law
The foundations of international economic law Conventional rules of international law like as pacta sunt servanda (liberty, national sovereignty, individual freedom, and reciprocity), economic sovereignty, and economic sovereignty are the foundations of global economic law. It is often founded on modern and advancing principles including the responsibility to associate, perpetual sovereign power over natural resources, and preferential treatment for developing and emerging economies, and least-developed countries in general.
The references of international economic law also seem to be the same as those of international law probably stated in Article 38 of the International Court of Justice Statute: Article 38 (1) The Court, for whom feature it is to resolve the dispute brought before it in accordance with the rules, shall be applicable:
- General or specific international conventions instituting guidelines clearly and explicitly recognized by the contesting nations;
- Regional and global custom, as evidence of a commonly acknowledged legal practice;
- The universal legal principles recognized by civilized nations;
- Subject to the provisions of Article 59, court interpretation and the precepts of the most qualified and experienced publicists from various nations may be used as a secondary means of determining legal rules.
International Economic Law’s fundamental principles
In an effort to include the NIEO’s specified objectives to make up the principles of customary international economic relations, the Un General Assembly Adopted the 1974 Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States (CERDS) as part of its resolutions on the NIEO. The complete text of the Charter is included in this Study Guide. In the following phrase, Chapter 1 of the Charter explains the fundamental concepts of international affairs: Financial, diplomatic, as well as other relations between states, shall be administered, among other things, by the following guidelines:
- State sovereignty, the integrity of the country, and political independence;
- All states’ sovereign equality;
- Absence of intervention;
- Mutual, fair, and equal gain;
- Coexistence in peace;
- People’s equal rights and self-determination;
- Dispute resolution in a peaceful manner;
- Redressing prejudices brought about because of force that deprives a country and its people of the conventional sources essential for its normal growth and development;
- Completion of international norms in good faith;
- Protection of human rights and international conventions;
- No endeavor to pursue hegemony and spheres of impact;
- Advancement of global social justice; and
- International cooperation.
- Landlocked countries can afford access to and from the sea within the structure of the above precepts.
These are core guidelines that include political & economic precepts, and they represent the trend of the early 1970s.
Natural resource legislation on International Economic Law
The Stockholm Declaration of 1972
The Stockholm Declaration of the Un-Conference on the Human climate/Environment of 19721 was possibly the very first significant worldwide international environmental law instrument that defined the idea of natural resource conservation onto the initiative of global economic legislation.
Declaration of Economic Duties and Obligations of States,1974
The following clause was added to Article 30 of the 1974 Declaration of Economic Rights and Responsibilities of States, which complemented the spirit of the Stockholm Declaration: For present and future generations, all states bear a duty for environmental protection, sustainability, and development. All states must make every effort to develop their own social and environmental policies in accordance with their responsibilities.
As a result, momentum has been preserved within international environmental law to restrict the right to violate natural resources in pursuit of environmental preservation. As a consequence, the importance of conserving resources and using them sustainable basis was emphasized in the 1982 World Charter for Nature.
World Charter for Nature 1982
As per the preamble to this Charter, ‘man could significantly change nature as well as exhaust natural resources through his intervention or its impacts and, as a result, should fully acknowledge the imperative of ensuring the stability & efficiency of nature and protecting natural resources.
UN Convention on the Law of the Sea 1982
There’s a need to protect and preserve the environment while somehow trying to exploit the natural environment has been evidenced in the Law of the Sea Convention, which went into effect the same year. According to Article 193 of this Convention, states have the free and independent right to oppress their natural resources in accordance with their climate change policies and their obligation to preserve and protect the marine ecosystem.
The World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) report of 1985 (commonly called as the ‘Brundtland Commission’) promoted the word ‘sustainable development,’ encapsulating both states’ right to economic and social development as well as their responsibility to pay specific care to any degradation of the environment caused by developmental projects.
Rio Conference 1992
Following the Brundtland Commission’s work on vague generalizations also including sustainable development, which encompassed not just the environment but also all other areas of economic activities governed by global economic law, the United Nations decided to maintain a specific Convention on Environmental issues in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
The Rio Declaration was unanimously adopted by the Rio Conference, the biggest convention ever organized in international affairs history. It emphasizes the importance of understanding: the state’s right under global economic law to abuse their own assets in accordance with their very own climate change policies; and the responsibilities of states under environment protection rules to protect those initiatives under their jurisdiction of the state need not damage the environment of many other states or regions beyond national jurisdiction.
United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity
The United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity was signed in 1992
It wasn’t the only thing that came out of the Rio Conference. The Un Convention on Bio-Diversity was signed and ratified at the Rio Conference in 1992, and 157 nations, along with the European Union, signed it.
Conclusions of the International Economic Law
Traditionally, environmental problems were not given considerable importance in international economic law. Until recently, international economic and commercial activity expanded rapid pace, with hardly concern for the environmental damage they caused.
The principal international economic objective of the post-World War II period was to promote the free flow of commodities and capital across borders, as well as to allow states to fully use their natural resources for economic development.
International economic law has attempted to keep up with the rise of international economic activity and trade by regulating everything and anything feasible but has paid little attention to the environmental aspects of the process development of the economy.