China and UWI launch joint legal research centre

The sharp difference in cultural and legal frameworks, which often hinders business opportunities between Barbados and China, could now be explained much easier courtesy of the signing of two Memorandum of Understandings (MOU) between the University of the West Indies (UWI) and China University of Political Science and Law (CUPL).

One of the agreements is between The UWI Press and the CUPL Press while the other establishes a joint Caribbean-China Legal Research Centre at The UWI, Cave Hill, and the other.

The developments are the culmination of discussions which began about two years ago and received endorsement at the second meeting of the Confucius Institute Board of Directors in Beijing in March 2016.

In delivering her remarks before the landmark signing at the Cave Hill Campus this afternoon, Principal Professor Eudine Barriteau explained the significant number of possibilities the two MOUs would facilitate by providing greater insight into the legal framework of the Caribbean and China.

Prinicipal of UWI Cave Hill Campus Eudine Barritteau (right) and Chairman of the CUPL Council Professor Hu Ming signing the MOU to establish a joint Caribbean-China Legal Research Centre at The UWI, Cave Hill.

“A key requirement to conducting business between these Eastern and Western cultures is a mutual understanding of each other’s legal systems. In this regard, functional cooperation between the UWI Press and the CUPL Press will make legal and other critical information available, not only to academics and legal practitioners, but persons seeking business and other opportunities in China. The MOU between the two university presses is aimed at promoting the translation and publication of their works,” Baritteau told the gathering.

“Implementation of the MOU should significantly enhance knowledge of China in the Caribbean, and of the Caribbean in China through the publication and translation of important texts. In particular, considerable gaps in the knowledge of Chinese law in the Caribbean and Caribbean law in China will be addressed through this ground-breaking cooperation,” she added.

Similarly, the MOU establishing a joint legal research centre at the Cave Hill Campus is geared towards bolstering the legal understanding of both jurisdiction. It was revealed that the MOU is a first in the Caribbean and will enable Chinese and Caribbean scholars and students to work together to enhance their knowledge of the law in each other’s jurisdiction.

“Given the importance of law to, inter alia, well-regulated trade, the centre has the potential to provide Caribbean-China relations with an entirely new platform
for cooperation and mutual understanding,” Professor Barriteau said.

 “It is a wonderful time to be embarking on these initiatives, especially the research centre. Although cooperation will be in the area of legal research initially, I hope that very soon we can expand this to other sectors, to our mutual benefit. Research in China is taking place at a spectacular pace, especially scientific research which is fuelled by major funding and a rapidly expanding technical workforce.”

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