Reliable legal framework for sustainable economic development

Project description

Title: Consolidating the legal framework for sustainable economic development
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Mongolia
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs
Overall term: 2017 to 2020

Context

Despite the progress that has been made on Mongolia’s transition from a planned to a market economy, foreign investors have limited confidence in the country’s judicial system, its existing legal framework and the overall degree of legal certainty. GIZ and its partners have already introduced methods and instruments to improve law-making in the line ministries and at the Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs. However, the ministries still lack expertise on economic issues.

In addition, there are still a large number of laws dating from the socialist era that are in conflict with the newly created commercial laws. The judiciary does not have sufficient capacity to guarantee fair proceedings in all cases. There is a lack of economic expertise among the judiciary and the civil service, and inefficient organisation imposes an additional burden on the judicial system in the form of administrative duties.

Objective

The foundations for a stable legal framework have been created for economic stakeholders.

Approach

The project is improving the institutional conditions, economic policy and human resources in the development and application of commercial and business law and in the criminal justice system. It is involving Mongolian, German and other foreign companies and investors in a process that aims to support sustainable, broad-based economic growth.

As well as providing advice on the reform of commercial law, the project is also supporting the Mongolian partners in consolidating and improving laws. The Mongolian Government has identified the consolidation and harmonisation of commercial law as one of the core tasks of legal reform in its Action Programme 2016–2020.

The project is also helping to develop knowledge and skills in legal professions and in judicial and administrative institutions (capacity development). To improve the performance of the judicial system for economic stakeholders, the project focuses on establishing a central training body for the judiciary and associated civil servants. Using a new vocational training course for judicial clerks, the project is helping to train new skilled staff. GIZ is also supporting training for judges across Mongolia in cooperation with the country’s Supreme Court and Judicial General Council.

An IT system is being used to network public prosecutors, the Ministry of Justice and criminal justice authorities with the aim of enhancing transparency and efficiency in criminal proceedings.

In addition, the project is planning legal training courses on law and legal practice relating to international investments. These courses will cover both the underlying legal framework and application of the law based on case studies.

The project operates in Ulan Bator and at a decentralised level in all of Mongolia’s provinces where courts and public prosecutors are based. Existing partnerships with the judiciary in the German federal states of Hesse and Bavaria are facilitating advisory assignments by short-term experts and temporary placements in Germany.

Results

  • Increasing the performance capability of the judiciary: Three training courts for civil, criminal and administrative disputes have been set up. Curricula are currently being developed for the theoretical and practical training of judicial clerks.
  • Consolidation and harmonisation: Line ministries such as the Ministry of the Environment and the Ministry of Mining are already preparing draft legal consolidation acts for their areas of responsibility. The aim of consolidating and harmonising laws is to prevent the overall number of laws from increasing again.
  • Enhancing transparency and efficiency in criminal proceedings: An IT-based system (eJustice) was set up at all police stations, courts, public prosecutors’ offices and enforcement authorities throughout the country as of 1 March 2018. The introduction of this system means that all the steps of criminal and administrative proceedings are digitalised, and errors with regards to procedural law are minimised at the relevant authorities. The IT system also speeds up the handling of proceedings under criminal and administrative law. With the changeover to paperless data transfer between authorities, the number of times the database is accessed is increasing continuously. Thus, the database was accessed on a total of around 102,000 occasions between March and May 2018, and the average monthly increase was 28 per cent.
  • Strengthening of the Ministry of Justice in the field of international investment law: A group of 25 Mongolian civil servants from relevant line ministries and downstream authorities have been identified to participate in the initial training courses. A training plan has been developed for 2017–2020 based on an analysis of the expertise and specialist skills of this group.