The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) was formed on December 8, 1991 by Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine on the basis of the Minsk Agreement Establishing the Commonwealth of Independent States. The States committed to seek balanced development within a common economic area, to achieve international cooperation and integration and to refrain from using force, economic pressure or any other coercive methods.

The Alma-Ata Declaration (December 21, 1991) states, in particular, that cooperation within the Commonwealth shall be based on the principle of equality by means of coordinating institutions formed on a parity basis and acting in the manner determined by arrangements between CIS Member States.

At this time CIS Member States actively started to develop the legal base in different areas for strengthening cooperation within CIS. This work revealed the necessity of creating an effective legal body aimed to resolve possible disputes and conflicts among the CIS States granting equal opportunities and adequate protection of the rights and legitimate interests within the Commonwealth.

Moreover, there was no independent body authorized to interpret provisions of the CIS agreements and acts, the number of which had been growing steadily.

In addition, some legislative acts of the former Soviet Union were still in force, which led to occasional conflict of laws between that acts and legal provisions of the CIS.

Therefore, the necessity of establishing an international judicial body authorized to resolve disputes that go beyond the competence of the CIS national courts was obvious.

For the first time the idea was announced during the Alma-Ata Declaration’s signing and brought into effect on 21 December 1991in the Agreement on cooperation between commercial, arbitration courts of the Republic of Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine. The Parties recognized in Article 12 the intention to create the Arbitration (Economic) Court of the Commonwealth.

Further inquiry on the legal form of the institute of dispute resolution, which would be the most adapted to the realities of the Commonwealth, led to the unambiguous conclusion in favor of the establishment of an international judicial body without arbitration functions as such functions do not satisfy principal requirements to specific goals and objectives of international dispute settlement. Moreover, as it was previously demonstrated in practice of other reputable international organizations (UN, EU), only judicial institution is the most effective, efficient, and productive for the civilized dispute resolution.

The CIS States emphasized again a decision to establish the CIS Commertial Court in the Tashkent Agreement on the measures on improvement of payments between entities of the CIS countries (May 15, 1992).As underlined in Article 5 of this Agreement the main purpose of that future Court was settlement of interstate economic disputes that are beyond the competence of the high economic national courts of the CIS States. For this purpose, the State Parties agreed to prepare draft agreement on the Court’s functioning for the next meeting of the Council of Heads of the CIS States.

During the preparation of statutory documents of the Court, it was decided to call it “the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States”, as this name fully reflected to the challenges that would be addressed to the first international judicial body in the Commonwealth.

On the 6th of July, 1992 in Moscow, at the meeting of the supreme body of the Commonwealth, the CIS Council of Heads of States, the leaders of eight countries — Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan — signed the Agreement on the Status of the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States, which at the same time approved the Regulation on the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

This Agreement became one of history’s watersheds on international justice in the Commonwealth. The CIS member states reaffirmed their commitment to adhere strictly to universally recognized norms and principles of international law, including peaceful settlement of international disputes.

The importance of the creation of the CIS Economic Court for the CIS countries is demonstrated by the fact that the Agreement on the status of the CIS Economic Court of July 6, 1992 came into effect in a fairly short period of time — in 1992 for the Republic of Belarus, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Uzbekistan; in 1993 — for the Republic of Armenia; in 1994 — for the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Republic of Tajikistan; in 1995 — for the Republic of Moldova.

The Agreement on the Status of the CIS Economic Court of 6 July, 1992 and the Regulation of the CIS Economic Court approved by and being an integral part of this Agreement, as well as the provisions of Article 32 of the Charter of the CIS Economic Court of 22 January, 1993 were legal basis for the activity of the CIS Economic Court.

Since the 1st of January 2006, the Republic of Armenia does not participate in the activities and in the funding of the Economic Court of the CIS, as the CIS Economic Court has been notified by the CIS Executive Committee’s note of November 22, 2005.

The Parliament of the Republic of Moldova by means of the Law No. 126 — XVIII of December 23, 2009 denounced the Agreement on the status of the CIS Economic Court of July 6, 1992, as the CIS Economic Court has been notified by the CIS Executive Committee’s note of February 10, 2010.

Article 3 of the Agreement on the status of the CIS Economic Court of 6 July, 1992 defines the location of the Economic Court in the city of Minsk (Belarus).

On November 22, 1996 contract between Belarus and the CIS Economic Court on the terms of residence of the CIS Economic Court on the territory of the Republic of Belarus was signed. The Treaty was ratified by the Law of June 2, 1997 No. 42-Z.

Paragraph 15 of the Provisions of the CIS Economic Court provides that the CIS Economic Court is a legal entity and has a seal with its designation.

Since March 3, 2004, the CIS Economic Court acted in capacity of the EurAsEC Court in accordance with the Agreement between the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Eurasian Economic Community on the performance by the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States the functions of the Court of the Eurasian Economic Community of March 3, 2004.

According to Article 1 of the Agreement, the CIS Economic Court temporarily, until the creation of the EurAsEC Court, had to ensure the uniform application of the Treaty on the establishment of the Eurasian Economic Community of October 10, 2000 or other international agreements and decisions of the EurAsEC that are in force within EurAsEC.

The jurisdiction of the CIS Economic Court within EurAsEC extended to interstate economic disputes arising from:

  • the application of the Treaty on the establishment of the Eurasian Economic Community of October 10, 2000 and other relevant international agreements within the Eurasian Economic Community and decisions of the bodies of the EurAsEC;
  • the fulfillment of obligations under existing international agreements within the EurAsEC and decisions of the bodies of the EurAsEC;
  • the jurisdiction of the CIS Economic Court may include other disputes under existing international agreements in the framework of the EurAsEC.

The CIS Economic Court intepreted the provisions of international treaties within the EurAsEC and the decisions of the EurAsEC bodies, as well as decisions on individual cases.

On July 27, 2011 the CIS Economic Court of the CIS Executive Committee has been informed by the CIS Executive Committee that on July 1, 2011 a letter was received from the Secretary General of EurAsEC dated June 29, 2011 No. IK/03-448 containing a notice of termination since the 1st of January, 2012 of the Agreement between the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Eurasian Economic Community on the performance by the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States the functions of the Court of the Eurasian Economic Community of March 3, 2004 as well as the Protocol to this Agreement.

The place the CIS Economic Court in statutory bodies of the CIS system visually embodied in the Scheme of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

 
Structure of the Commonwealth of Independent States

 

Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States
located in the Republic of Belarus, in the center of Minsk at:
Str. Kirova, 17 (in the building of the Executive Committee of the Commonwealth of Independent States)

Dear colleagues and visitors, welcome to the website of the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States!

Here you can find detailed legal information on the activity of the CIS Economic Court – the first judicial institution of its kind in the post-Soviet area.

The CIS Economic Court holds a special place in the Commonwealth of Independent States. Being a statutory body of the authoritative international organization, it is also an interstate court aimed to provide the fulfillment of economic commitments within the framework of the Commonwealth.

The Member States pledged to create the Economic Court of the CIS in the Agreement on the measures to provide for improvement of payments between economic entities of the CIS countries (May 15, 1992) and set up it by the Agreement on the status of the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States (July 6, 1992) and by the Charter of the Commonwealth of Independent States (January 22, 1993).

The establishment of the CIS Economic Court and its subsequent reforming has always been in the forefront of the development of the Commonwealth of Independent States. Nowadays, the Court has held to its credit a range of decisions on various issues of international cooperation, being fully consistent with high expectations of the Member States as a statutory body of an international organization.

The importance of the CIS Economic Court’s activity is emphasized by the CIS Council of the Heads of States, the highest body of the Commonwealth, in the Concept of further development of the CIS (October 5, 2007): “a necessary element of the modern framework of international economic relations is a judicial mechanism of dispute settlement”.

This website provides you a unique opportunity to acquire all the necessary information on the history of the CIS Economic Court, its structure and activity. I hope this information will be useful for practicing lawyers as well as for amateurs who are fascinated with law.

Best regards,
The President of the CIS Economic Court,
The President of the Plenum of the CIS Economic Court
Ludmila Kamenkova

 

 

Judges of the CIS Economic Court

In accordance with article 6 of the Provision on the CIS Economic Court, the CIS Economic Court is formed from an equal number of judges from each state-party. In accordance with Article 2 of the Agreement on the Status of the CIS Economic Court of July 6, 1992, the quota number of judges from each state-party was two people .

By the decision of the Council of the Heads of States of the CIS on measures on further enhancement of efficiency of the CIS organs and optimization of its structure of October 2, 2002, the number of judges was reduced to one judge from each state.

In accordance with the Provision on the Economic Court of the CIS all judges are elected (appointed) by the State parties in accordance with their own domestic procedure used for the election (appointment) of judges to their highest economic, arbitration courts for a 10-year period, strictly on the professional ground, among judges of economic (arbitration) courts and other persons, who must be highly qualified experts in the field of economic and legal relations, also they must have higher legal education.

Entering the office on the meeting of the CIS Economic Court, each judge has to take the following oath:

“I do solemnly swear that I will perform my duties honestly and in good faith, and be impartial and just, as demand my judge duty and my conscience.”

While administering justice, judges put on gowns.

Today the CIS Economic Court is composed of the following judges:

  • Ludmila Kamenkova (Belarus),
  • Evelina Nagornaya (Russian Federation).

The President of the CIS Economic Court, his deputies and judges can not be recalled before the appointed time, or dismissed in any other way, except the cases, when they can be recalled by the organs who appointed them. A judge can be recalled for the following reasons: abuse of duties, felonies, and illness. After expiration of powers or resignation, judges are granted benefits provided for judges by legislation of the States parties .

Judges of the CIS Economic Court are independent and inviolable, they do not fall within the jurisdiction of the State of residence. Also judges cannot be brought to criminal or administrative responsibility, arrested or attached without permission of the CIS Economic Court.

The President of the CIS Economic Court, his deputies and judges cannot represent interests of any State or interstate organs or organizations, commercial entities, political parties and movements, territories, nations or ethnic groups, social and religious groups and particular persons. They do not have the right to exercise any activity connected with receiving profits, except the scientific and teaching activities.

The President of the CIS Economic Court arranges the functioning of the CIS Economic Court’s executive office, affirms the structure and personnel, appoints and dismisses from service executive office personnel, determines the terms of payment for labour, exercises other powers within its competence.

At the coordination meeting of the CIS Economic Court held on December, 15th 2011 Ludmila Kamenkova was elected as the President of the CIS Economic Court.

In accordance with the Agreement between the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Republic of Belarus on the terms of residence of the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States on the territory of the Republic of Belarus, the CIS Economic Court according to granted privileges is equal to diplomatic representative offices of foreign states situated on the territory of the Republic of Belarus.

Judges and members of their families exercise all privileges and immunities that are granted to all diplomatic representatives of foreign countries and their family members in the Republic of Belarus, except for the judges and their family members which are citizens of the Republic of Belarus.

In case the judge is the citizen of the Republic of Belarus, the judge enjoys judicial immunity from liability for all actions taken in their judicial capacities .

Peculiarities of legal status of the judges of the CIS Economic Court are also regulated by legal acts of the Commonwealth of Independent States: General provision on interstate (intergovernmental) organs of the Commonwealth of Independent States, confirmed by the Decision of the CIS Council of the Heads of Governments of October, 21 1994; the Agreement on the legal Status of functionaries and members of the Commonwealth of Independent States’ organs of April, 25 2003.

For the whole period of activity/ functioning of the CIS Economic Court, all States parties of the Agreement on the Status of the CIS Economic Court dated July, 6 1992, except the Republic of Uzbekistan, appointed (elected) 22 judges as members of the CIS Economic Court.

The former judges of the CIS Economic Court:

  • the Republic of Armenia – Simonyan G. (1994 – 2006);
  • the Republic of Belarus – Dashuk L. (1992 – 1997); Miroshnik V. (1992 – 2008);
  • the Republic of Kazakhstan – Begaliev M. (1994 – 1997), Bekenov R. (1994 – 1997), Kazhenov A. (1997 – 2003), Sarsenbaev (1997 – 2001), Zholdibaev S.Z. (2003 – 2013), Seytimova V.H. (2013-2015);
  • the Kyrgyz Republic – Abdrakhmanov S. (1994 – 1996), Zhoroev K. (2000 – 2006), Kerimbaeva A. (1992 – 2013);
  • the Republic of Moldova – Apostol D.(1995 – 2005), Vilkov I. (1995 – 2005);
  • the Russian Federation – Bereziy A. (1993 – 1995), Kleandrov M. (1993 – 1995), Saffiulin D. (1996 – 1998), Plaksin S. (1997 – 1998), Zapolsky S. (1998 – 2000), Molchanova T. (2003-2013);
  • the Republic of Tajikistan – Makhmudova L. (1995 – 2003), Tolibov H. (1995 – 2004), Abdulloev F. (2004 – 2011).
Ludmila KAMENKOVA
Judge from the Republic of Belarus
President of the CIS Economic Court
President of the CIS Economic Court’s Plenum
 
 

Ludmila Kamenkova was born on April 28th, 1956 in Belarus.

She graduated from the Law Faculty of Belarusian State University in 1980.

Professional experience:

  • intern at prosecutor’s office, assistant prosecutor of Mogilev Tsentralny district (1980 – 1981)
  • prosecutor assistant, prosecutor senior assitant of Mogilev Oktyabrsky district (1981 – 1988)
  • prosecutor of Minsk Frunzensky district (1988 – 1991)
  • prosecutor, prosecutor at office (1991 – 1992)
  • Deputy Head of Department, Head of Department of Legal Service of External Affairs of the Ministry of Justice (1992 – 1999)
  • Head of the section of legal service of bilateral economic relations of the Legal Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (1999-2000)
  • Head of the section of legal service of multilateral cooperation of the Legal Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (2000 – 2001)
  • Head the Legal Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (2001 – 2004)
  • Head the Main Legal Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (2004 – August, 2008)

Ludmila Kamenkova was appointed as a judge of the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States by the Order of the President of the Republic of Belarus dated August 14, 2008 No.421.

She took office as a judge of the CIS Economic Court on August 21, 2008.

From 2009 to 2011 Ludmila Kamenkova was the Secretary of the Plenum of the CIS Economic Court.

At the coordination meeting of the CIS Economic Court dated December 15, 2011 Ludmila Kamenkova was elected as the President of the CIS Economic Court.

On December 5, 2012 by the CIS Council of the Heads of States Ludmila Kamenkova was approved as the President of the CIS Economic Court.

By the Ordinance of Council of Ministers of Republic of Belarus of April 27, 2006 No.558 Ludmila Kamenkova was awarded with the Certificate of Honor of the Council of Ministers of Republic of Belarus.

By Order of the State Secretary of the Union State dated December 22, 2009 Ludmila Kamenkova was awarded with a commemorative medal “For partnership”.

On July 5, 2012 Ludmila Kamenkova was awarded with the Certificate of Honor of the CIS Economic Court.

On October 25, 2013 Ludmila Kamenkova was awarded with the Certificate of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

 

Evelina NAGORNAYA
Judge from the Russian Federation
Secretary of the CIS Economic Court’s Plenum
 

Born on April 15th, 1954 in Gorky, Russia.

Higher education - graduated from the National Correspondence Law Institute in 1981. Has candidate degree in laws (LLM).

Professional experience:

  • State arbitrator (1987 – 1992);
  • Judge of the Moscow City Arbitration Court (1992 – 1995);
  • Judge of the Federal Arbitration Court of Moscow District (1995 – 2013).

On September 25, 2013 the Council of the Federation of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation approved the appointment of a judge of the CIS Economic Court (Order No. 347-SF).

Office as a judge of the CIS Economic Court taken on October 21, 2013.

On December 2, 2013 elected as the Secretary of the Plenum of the CIS Economic Court (Decision of the Plenum of December 2, 2013 No. 1).

Awarded medals “In Commemoration of 850th Anniversary of Moscow” (1997), “For Merit to the Judicial System of the Russian Federation” II class (2007) and anniversary medal “20 years of arbitration courts of the Russian Federation” (2011), Certificate of Honor of the Supreme Court of Arbitration of the Russian Federation (2000), honorary titles “Veteran of Labour” (1999) and “Honored Lawyer of the Russian Federation” (2011), Commendation of the Council of Judges of the Russian Federation (2005).