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Establishment of Australia - Japan Trade Law Foundation

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Prominent businessmen, trade lawyers, academics and

senior government officials decided last night to establish a

Foundation designed to overcome the legal difficulties

associated with trade between Australia and Japan.

The meeting, convened in Sydney by the Commonwealth

Solicitor-General, Mr R.J. Ellicott, Q.C., and hosted by British

Tobacco, was attended by 50 representatives from major

Australian importing and exporting companies, from export

organisations, from Japanese companies operating in Australia

and from law faculties throughout Australia.

The Foundation is to be known as the Australia-

Japan Trade Law Foundation and its'objects will be substantially

as follows -

. to promote and facilitate trade between Australia and Japan

through the study and exposition of the laws, legal forms

and legal practices of each country relevant to trade,

. to promote common understanding of the steps involved and

terms used in the process of the negotiation and formation

of trade contracts between the businessmen of each country

and of the meaning and effect of commercial obligations in

each country,

. to draft and publish for use by businessmen in trade between

the two countries standard general conditions of sale and

other contractual documents,

. to encourage exchange visits by lawyers and businessmen of

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each country with a view to promoting common understanding

of the laws, legal forms and legal practices of each

country relevant to trade,

. to promote reciprocal arrangements for commercial

arbitration in each country, and,

. to do such other things as may be conducive to the

attainment of the above objects or any of them.

The Foundation will begin work immediately

probing the most pressing legal problems associated with

trade with Japan. Its first task will be to undertake

a study with a view to formulating a set of general conditions

for use by businessmen in trade between Australia and Japan.

It is proposed that the officers of the Foundation

will be -

. Chairman - the Commonwealth Solicitor-General,

Mr R.J. Ellicott, Q.C.

. Secretary - Mr J . Tuckfield, Secretary, Colonial Sugar .

Refining Co. Ltd.

. Research Director - Professor K . Ryan, Dean of the Faculty

of Law, University of Queensland.

. The Commonwealth Attorney-General, Senator Ivor J.

Greenwood, Q.C., said that the proposals discussed at the

meeting recognised the growing significance of Australia's

trading relations with Japan. Any move to simplify the legal

complexities associated with trade between the two countries

was warmly welcomed.

He agreed with the Chief Justice of New South Wales,

Mr Justice Kerr, who was present at the meeting and indicated

his willingness to become the patron of the new Foundation,

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that the meeting last night was an important and historic


Professor S . Michida, a leading Japanese trade

lawyer and a specialist in international trade law told the

meeting he would take steps to establish the organisation in

Japan. The projects in Australia and Japan would be

co-ordinated so that the most troublesome legal problems would

be given priority.


July 21* 1972. 49/72