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COUNTRY Legal SYSTEM Profiles

Proelium Law LLP | The UK’s foremost legal authority on high-risk jurisdictions and specialist risk services

Proelium Law’s Country Legal System Profiles provide an overview of the legal system, business sector and the country itself for countries deemed to be complex environments or high risk jurisdictions.

We update our Country Profiles on a regular basis, however, if you have any specific queries please do get in touch at law@proeliumlaw.com and we will be happy to advise.

Vanuatu Legal Profile

Vanuatu has a unicameral parliament. Parliament is composed of fifty-two members, directly elected
by citizens from multi-member constituencies for a four-year term.

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Venezuela Legal Profile

The Venezuelan legal system is one of civil law based upon the Spanish Civil Code. There is a hierarchy of law: The Constitution forms the supreme national law.

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Uganda Legal Profile

Uganda’s anti-corruption framework consists of the Anti-Corruption Act, the Penal Code, the Inspectorate of Government Act 2002, the Public Finance Management Act 2015 and the Leadership Code Act 2002 (LCA).

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Turkey Legal Profile

Turkey possesses a civil law system based off a number of European legal systems. The Constitution is the supreme law of Turkey, followed by laws, law amending ordinances and international treaties, and consequently regulations and by-laws

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Tunisia Legal Profile

Tunisia ranks 73rd on the Transparency International index. The judiciary in Tunisia is criticized for a lack of independence and corruption. Irregular payments are frequently made to obtain favourable judgments.

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The Arabian Sea Legal Profile

The importance of the Arabian Sea, and particularly the Strait of Hormuz, stems from their role as the singular sea line of communication (SLOC) from the major oil and gas producing nations of the Persian Gulf to the rest of the world.

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Sudan Legal Profile

Sudan laws are based upon Sharia Law. This has caused conflict with other ethnic minorities. Corruption in the judicial system carries high risks for companies, in the form of petty corruption and from political interference.

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Qatar Legal Profile

The Qatari legal system is a civil law system with Sharia influences, the latter particularly relating to personal and family matters.

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Mayanmar Legal Profile

Myanmar has a unique legal system consisting of a combination of English common law, customary law and post-independence Burmese legislation.

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Malacca Straits Legal Profile

The Straits of Malacca and Singapore are critical chokepoints in global maritime trade as it provides the shortest, and thus most economical, passage between the South China Sea/Pacific Ocean and Indian Ocean.

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Lao PDR Legal Profile

Laos’s legal system does not meet the needs of a modern market. Legally, contractual rights are provided for however, in practice companies struggle with political interference. Even though there are commercial courts in place, legal administrators lack training and knowledge.

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Israel Legal Profile

Israel has a mixed legal system of English common law, British Mandate era regulations and Jewish, Christian and Islamic religious law.

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Guyana Legal Profile

Guatemala has a civil law system. There is a clear legal hierarchy, with constitutional law forming the supreme law of Guatemala, followed by statutory law.

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Guatemala Legal Profile

Guatemala has a civil law system. There is a clear legal hierarchy, with constitutional law forming the supreme law of Guatemala, followed by statutory law.

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Ethiopia Legal Profile

The politics of Ethiopia takes place in a framework of a federal parliamentary republic, where the Prime Minister is the head of government and the President is the head of state who is left with ceremonial powers.

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Egypt Legal Profile

Egypt possesses a legal system based upon Napoleonic civil and penal law, as well as Sharia law and colonial-era laws.[1] There is an established legislative hierarchy, in which the constitution represents the supreme law.

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Oman Legal Profile

Legislation in Oman is based on Islamic Sharia law. Oman does have its own constitution which is the Basic Statute of the State 1996. This is the first written constitution of the Oman.

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Bosnia and Herzegovina Legal Profile Report

The judicial system in Bosnia and Herzegovina is relatively slow in responding to corruption cases. The OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina created a report, Trial Monitoring of Corruption Cases in BiH: A First Assessment. This is based on the observation of 67 completed corruption cases between January 2010 and September 2017.

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Burundi Legal Profile

Burundi possesses a mixed legal system of Belgian civil law and customary law. According to Article 48 of the constitution, the constitution forms the supreme law of the nation and all laws which are contrary to it are classed as ‘null and void.’

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Colombia Legal Profile

The Colombian legal system is one of civil law. The Colombian hierarchy of laws is typical of civil law jurisdictions. The Constitution is the supreme national law and its provisions apply over any incompatibility between the Constitution and other legal regulations.

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Turkmenistan Legal Profile

The legal system in Turkmenistan is a civil law system, with Islamic law influences. There is an established hierarchy of laws, with the Constitution being supreme and followed by Constitutional laws, codes, ordinary law, presidential decrees and resolutions by the National Assembly.

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Afghanistan Legal Profile

The legal system in Afghanistan is a mix of civil, customary (such as Pashtunwali) and Islamic Sharia law; the application of these depends on local acceptance of central legislation and state authority. The system is made up of the Constitution, state codes, state laws, decrees and regulations.

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Iraq Legal Profile

Iraq’s legal system contains both civil law in the form of statutes and regulations and Sharia law. The Iraqi Constitution of 2005 is supreme and any legal text that contradicts the Constitution is ‘considered void’. It also acts as the guarantor of the unity of Iraq. Islam plays a key role within Iraq’s legal system

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Syria Legal Profile

Syria’s legal system is classed as one of civil law combined with Islamic law for matters of personal status. The Constitution of 2012 is supreme and all laws passed must be deemed constitutional. The Constitution also confirms the role of Islam in the state: being the religion of the President as well as a major source of legislation.

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Libya Legal Profile

The current legal system of Libya has been described as ‘in flux and driven by state and non-state entities’ and there are no laws applied consistently across the entirety of the country. The Constitution of 2011 is no longer applicable to the current political situation, but in July 2017 a new draft Constitution was created.

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Nigeria Legal Profile

Nigeria has a mixed legal system comprising of English common law, Sharia and customary law. The 1999 Constitution, is the supreme law of Nigeria, prevailing over all other sources; Laws that are inconsistent with the Constitution are void as to the extent of the inconsistency.

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South Sudan Legal Profile

The South Sudanese legal system is built upon both customary and statutory law and has a clear hierarchy of law as specified in the South Sudanese Transitional Constitution. The sources of legislation stem from the supreme law of the Constitution, written statutory law, the customs and traditions of the South Sudanese people as well as the will of the people.

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Yemen Legal Profile

The Yemeni legal system is a mixed system of Islamic Law, Napoleonic law, customary law and English common law, although the system is, in reality, in flux. The constitution is supreme in Yemen, which is explicitly stated in the 2015 Draft Constitution. Nevertheless, this was rejected by the Houthi side, who prefer a two-region solution which allows them to dominate northern Yemen, over the proposed six-region federal system.

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Somalia Legal Profile

The Somali legal system is mixed, consisting of civil, Sharia and customary law. The Provisional Constitution of the Federal Republic of Somalia defines the hierarchy of laws in Somalia and confirms the role of Islam in the state. Article 4 states that ‘after the Shari’ah, the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Somalia is the supreme law of the country’.

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Pakistan Legal Profile

Pakistan follows a common law legal system with significant Islamic law influences. Whilst the Constitution is Pakistan’s supreme law, the role of Islam is also enshrined in the Constitution. Islam is declared the state religion, whilst Part IX of the Constitution defines the Islamic Provisions which are fundamental to the State of Pakistan.

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