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Qatar’s National Vision 2030 focuses on the holistic development of the country’s various sectors. Modernization and economic development are considered essential in order to achieve the aforementioned vision. Therefore, legislations and judicial authorities are continuously exposed to amendments and alterations that lead to development, growth and maturity.
In one of the latest developments introduced, Law number (21) of 2021 of establishing the Investment and Commerce Court was issued in October-2021.
The law consists of 35 articles and will enter into force after 6 months of the day of publication in the official gazette. In this article, the author will provide a brief review of The Investment and Commerce Court Law.
The Court’s Hierarchy:
The court consists of two levels; circuits of first instance and circuits of appeal. In addition, the Court shall have a General Assembly according to article (6) of The Law. Certain Judge/s of the court shall be given the jurisdiction of urgent claims and petitions by the President of the Court. Moreover, the court will have a Case Management Office with a Judge president chosen by the President of the Court. Last but not least, an Execution Judge shall also be assigned by the president of the Court.
The Court’s Jurisdiction:
According to Article number (7) of the Law, the Court is considered competent in the following disputes and matters:
- Commercial contracts, commercial representation and agency, commercial transactions between merchants, Commercial assets and
- Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) and the foreign Capital Investment in the Economic sector.
- Maritime sales and transactions.
- Banking transactions, Insurance companies, Finance and Investment companies, bankruptcy and preventive bankruptcy arrangements.
- Intellectual Property Rights (Patents, Trademarks, Commercial secrets, etc…) and matters related to Fair Competition Law.
- Disputes arising between partners, shareholders and the company in commercial companies, including public shareholding companies.
Accelerated procedures and Electronic System:
Shorter periods for several procedures are stipulated in the new Court’s Law as follows:
|Appeal.||15 days from the date of informing the parties.|
|Appeal on urgent matters and decisions related to grievances on petitions.||7 days from the date of informing the parties.|
|The response of the Defendant.||30 days from the date of being notified.|
|Preliminary Judgment.||10 days from the date of referral.|
|Assigning the date of the first hearing.||15 days from the date of referral.|
|Final Judgement.||90 days from the date of referral.|
|Expert’s Report submission.||60 days from the date of assigning the Expert.|
In addition to the shorter time limits and durations designated by the legislator, the Law introduced and mentioned the use of an electronic system in the trial procedures to ensure the smoothness, flexibility and efficiency in the whole process. A step that shows a great ability of adaptation to the accelerated global developments, needs and circumstances.
After the establishment of the Investment and Commerce Court, Re-evaluating the effectiveness and necessity of other “Special Courts” such as the QICDRC is very essential, a fundamental topic that we will discuss in our next article.
For further information about the Investment and Commerce Court, Don’t Hesitate to contact any of our professionals at Al-Hababi Law Firm!