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The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has made claims that global trade is being hampered by large companies' uncertainty about which national courts might hear a case regarding a contested contract.
A world business group survey found that 40 per cent of companies were dissuaded from going ahead with international contracts because of such concerns.
ICC lawyer Michael Hancock said: "Business needs predictability and certainty in international contracts. When two companies make a choice of a national court in a contract, their choice must be respected."
The ICC paper has been given to officials drafting a proposed Hague convention that would aim to provide certainty over which jurisdiction would deal with disputes in cross-border deals.