• Journal of East Asia & International Law

Yijun Institute of International Law
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Aims to promote research and thinking of legal scholars and practitioners from both East Asia and another regions having its regional focus. The Journal is open to any international and comparative legal concerns and controversies regarding East Asian affairs
All aspects of international and comparative law applicable to East Asia will be covered by the scope of this Journal. In addition, significant developments relating to East Asia and international law will be dealt with. The Journal tries to bring those topics on the discussion table from an independent viewpoint of East Asia.
The inter-regional character of the Journal is ensured by its Editorial and International Advisory Board drawn from outstanding lawyers from the countries in this region as well as from its global network.

Latest documents

  • Legal Approach to Energy Security of Iran: With Special References to Crude Oil and Gas

    Despite the current developments in creation of state security, the question of affording energy security is of paramount importance worldwide. Hence, all countries try to adopt myriads of laws and regulations aimed at energy security. Energy security relates to the degree of economic welfare attached to the rise or fall in either the price or availability of energy. The Islamic Republic of Iran, on the one hand is located in a strategic center of producing and exporting energy (oil and gas) known as “ellipse of energy.” On the other hand, it is situated in the transit way of energy to large consuming markets such as South and East of Asia and Europe. Thus, Iran is currently considered as an effective player in providing energy security in the world. In this article, the authors seek to analyze the strategic policies and priorities stipulated in the oil and gas-related regulations of Iran in terms of energy security.

  • P. C. Chang's Concept of Human Dignity for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

    In the early days of the UN, human rights was one of the most pressing issues. After the UN Commission on Human Rights was established, the international community began to draft the UDHR. By exploring UN archives, this paper finds that during that process, Pengchun Chang (P. C. Chang), the Chinese representative, drew heavily on his view that human dignity was the raison d’être of human rights, and as a consequence recognition of the importance of human dignity was a key element in the UDHR eventually adopted. I conclude that Chang was skilled in his advocacy of the recognition of human dignity as he persuaded people to reach a consensus on human rights standards, providing a common standard for all peoples and all nations. This paper will mainly ask: What was the role of human dignity in P. C. Chang’s idea on human rights? What role can we say human dignity played? How did the UDHR treat the issue of human dignity?

  • Two Bites at the Same Apple? ?Derivative' ISDS Proceedings in the Revised Korea-US FTA

    The 2018 amendment of the KORUS has made an important stride in the investment chapter of the agreement. In particular, the amendment introduced new provisions to regulate multiple, subsequent or parallel ISDS proceedings involving the same governmental measures. The new provisions, however, arguably contain inherent limitations. They will be able to address only some of the multiple, subsequent or parallel proceedings. They then leave open a possibility where essentially the same investor raises a series of ISDS proceedings against essentially the same measures by an advance planning on the scope of ‘measures’ and/or form of ‘control.’ This means that the new provisions will not be able to fully prevent multiple, subsequent or parallel proceedings in the same context or circumstances from taking place, as was originally intended by the drafters. More detailed wordings and elaborations would have helped to achieve the objective. Future Joint Committee discussions or additional amendments should consider such clarification or elaboration.

  • The 2018 US-Korea FTA Revision: From the US Perspective

    The US-Korea FTA, in its initial days of negotiation saw severe protests by public and political turmoil in Seoul. After crossing several procedural hoops and political hurdles in parliaments of both countries it became effective in 2012, though it was signed in 2007. At that time, it was considered by the US a ‘model agreement’ which could open opportunities for the US exporters in the Korean market. However, only couple of years later, the Trump administration called this FTA a ‘horrible’ deal that has ‘destroyed’ America. Thus, the Trump administration wanted to scrap the FTA. After considering the political implications of such action, the US government decided to re-negotiate the FTA so that the US concerns are addressed. In a short period of negotiation, both sides agreed to the revised terms of the FTA which has become effective from January 1, 2019. This paper analyses outcomes of the revised US-Korea FTA, 2018 from the US perspective and evaluate if all concerns of the US are met.

  • Spratly Islands Dispute in the South China Sea: Potential Solutions

    The Spratly Islands dispute is an ongoing territorial dispute between China, Taiwan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Brunei, concerning territorial sovereignty over the Spratly Islands. This conflicting territorial claim between these coastal parties is raising tensions in Asia, so the settlement of this dispute is of key importance for a peaceful atmosphere in the area. The dispute is also significant in respect of being an international geo-strategic, economic, political and legal matter. After a 1988 armed conflict between Vietnamese and Chinese forces, the claimants have looked for approaches to solve the conflict peacefully through different informal endeavors, but due to the complexity of the dispute there are a number of barriers to reaching a permanent settlement. This study puts forward some potential approaches for resolving the dispute, considering its complex nature, by evaluating the six parties’ competing claims and analyzing the legal soundness of their claims.

  • Exploitation of Natural Resources in Kazakhstan: Judicial Practice for Foreign Investment

    Kazakhstan is one of the few countries worldwide endowed with a wealth of diverse natural resources. However, the country has yet to fully exploit these resources, for a variety of reasons, including high levels of corruption, ambiguous laws that cause confusion to the judiciary and consumers. The aim of this paper is to explore the exploitation of natural resource in the country from an international legal perspective. The article demonstrates how corruption hinders the exploitation of natural resources in Kazakhstan. It also describes how the current law seeks to address the issue of natural resource exploitation, noting its ambiguities. The paper concludes by highlighting the provisions made in the UN Declaration concerning Rights to Exploit Natural Resources, and makes recommendations concerning how Kazakhstan’s government can promote the rights of citizens to enjoy access to the land and natural resources.

  • Contesting Views of the Philippines and China over the Nine-Dash Line in the South China Sea

    The PCA’s decision refusing historic rights concerning the 9-DL cannot be enforced because the decision advantaging the Philippines has already been rejected by China. It, however, may be as a reference for some states to negotiate, since an optimistic atmosphere emerges among the disputing parties. The readiness for negotiation among them clearly requires that parties should not have rigid attitudes but should show flexibility based on the reciprocity principle. On one side, the PRC should set aside its typical intention to dominate most parts of the South China Sea as its traditional fishing ground based on historic rights concerning the 9-DL. On the other side, the Philippines should guarantee the regional stability and peace without questioning the real sovereignty of the PRC over several natural features, possibly related to the 9-DL claimed as its historic rights. The 9-DL is incompatible with the UNCLOS.

  • The Applicability of Artificial Intelligence in International Law

    Law reacts to the progression of scientific technology in the end. Though conservative, changes are beginning to take place due to Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI is automating conventional legal works, creating a new industry namely Legal-Tech. This paper investigates the characteristics and flow of legal-AI and computational law while focusing on the applicability of AI to international law. Mainly, the paper reviews three critical areas: dispute resolution, trial prediction, and machine translation, respectively. International law has different characteristics than the domestic law applied in each country. Unlike domestic law, international law has not been aggregated from a pandect, and it is a still daunting task to draw any meaningful insights for further analysis due mainly to limited data (i.e., trial cases and precedents). Nevertheless, AI is already penetrating the legal ecology system, and international law would eventually accept the influx of such changes exhibiting greater force.

  • The WTO Disciplines and Trade in Products Powered by Artificial Intelligence: Old Wine and New Wine-skin?

    As goods and services powered by AI continue to proliferate, scholarly opinion seems to consider that current WTO law is insufficient to regulate trade in AI-powered products. The following reasons can help explain this perceived insufficiency of the WTO law: (a) AI-powered products are difficult to categorise within the perceived goods/services dichotomy under WTO law, thus causing uncertainties as to the applicable legal regime; and (b) the WTO law has yet to respond to the need for national governments to strike a balance between trade and controversial trade practices regarding AI-powered products. This paper argues that while current WTO law is far from perfect, it does partly regulate trade in AI-powered products. The following observations substantiate the partial regulation of trade in AI-powered products by the WTO law: (a) AI-powered products cannot escape existing WTO disciplines on trade in goods and trade in services, by virtue of either the involvement of AI or the perceived goods/services dichotomy; and (b) efforts to balance trade/non-trade interests associated with trade in AI-powered products are allowed under the GATT/GATS’ ‘public morals’ and security exceptions.

  • Enabling Law and Policy Environment for Climate Technology Transfer: From Perspectives of Host Countries

    Climate friendly technologies contribute to tackling global climate crisis and the dynamic transfer of these technologies is important to achieve universal climate actions. The UNFCCC, and its recent Paris Agreement, have introduced international assistance to promote climate related-technology transfer. They call for collaborative actions from both technology supplier and demander sides in order to enable environments for a meaningful and effective technology transfer. According to the UNFCCC, the international technology assistance is unlikely to work in a desired way with the absence of indigenous enabling environments. Therefore, it is crucial to identify, assess and overcome potential barriers potentially confronted by host countries in their acquisition of climate technologies, which helps prepare these countries for climate resilience economy and sustainable development. This paper attempts to provide a deep and comprehensive analysis on enabling policy/law environments in host countries and uses Asian countries as examples in most occasions.

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