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Asean's Constitutionalization of International Law: Challenges to Evolution Under the New Asean Charter

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Title:Asean's Constitutionalization of International Law: Challenges to Evolution Under the New Asean Charter
Authors:Desierto, Diane A.
Keywords:International Obligations
Constitutional Law
Date Issued:2011
Citation:49 Colum. J. Transnat'l L. 268 2010-2011
Series:Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, Volume 49
Abstract:This Article discusses the normative trajectory of international obligations assumed by Southeast Asian countries (particularly the Organizational Purposes that mandate compliance with international treaties, human rights and democratic freedoms), and the inevitable emergence of a body of discrete "ASEAN Law" arising from the combined legislative functions of the ASEAN Summit and the ASEAN Political, Economic and Social Communities. I discuss several immediate and short-term challenges from the increased constitutionalization of international obligations, such as: 1) the problem of incorporation (or lack of direct effect) and the remaining dependence of some Southeast Asian states on their respective constitutional mechanisms to transform international obligations into binding constitutional or statutory obligations; 2) the problem of hybridity and normative transplantation, which I illustrate in the interpretive issues regarding the final text of the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement, which draws some provisions from GATT 1994 and contains language similar to the U.S. and German Model Bilateral Investment Treaties; and 3)the problem of diffuse or insufficient judicial oversight within ASEAN, seen through lingering dependence on national court implementation despite the regional effort at standardization of legal norms on specific areas of trade, security and human rights. I conclude that leaving these problems unaddressed could impede Southeast Asia's vast potential to contribute to the project of constitutionalizing international law.
Appears in Collections: Desierto, Diane (Former Faculty)

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