The minister responsible for business is counting on the planned commercial law court to transform the way business is done and boost the flagging economy.
Minister of Small Business, Commerce and Entrepreneurship Dwight Sutherland described the bill which was subsequently passed in the Lower House to add the new court as a “transformational piece of legislation”.
Sutherland referred to the country’s continued lagging near the bottom of the World Bank’s ranking on the ease of doing business – 129th out of 190 countries. He said that the efficiency of the legal system had a significant bearing on commerce.
Sutherland, MP for St George South, said: “The pace at which commercial disputes are resolved can impact on the growth of investment and indeed can impact economic development in this country.
“In order for business to strive they require an environment where commercial disputes can be resolved quickly, affordably and consistently. The court therefore plays a critical role in business facilitation in this country.”
Sutherland outlined a vast array of areas on which courts adjudicated business and commercial transactions and could include intellectual property issues, the enforcement of contracts and cases relating to imports and exports.
Currently, the ministry’s Consumer Claims Tribunal hears matters involving small businesses up to $10,000. He suggested the establishment of the Commercial Court would expand the service for different classes or business.
Sutherland told the House: “One can rightly say that justice has been delayed in this country and justice delayed means justice denied and from a business prospective justice delayed means business denied in this country.
“This is a transformational piece of legislation… to improve the ease of doing business. I am positive that as we continue on our journey looking at legislation that can impact business significantly and that can… unlock economic development in this country, we indeed are happy and we are on our way to economic recovery.”