The DRC completes its accession to OHADA: what will change and when?

The Minister of Justice and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic Republic of Congo (the "DRC") submitted on 13 July 2012 the instruments of adhesion to the OHADA Treaty in Senegal, the official depositary State. By doing so the DRC has finalised its accession process to OHADA which had begun in February 2004 and was authorised by law on 11 February 2010. The DRC is now the 17th African State in which OHADA law will be applicable. Within sixty days from 13 July 2012, OHADA law will be directly applicable in the DRC, except for specific transitional periods provided under certain Uniform Acts,in particular for existing DRC companies. The effective application of OHADA law in the DRC will bring significant immediate improvements to a number of fields of DRC business law which were often outdated such as for instance corporate law, security interests, recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards. The changes brought by OHADA will have a more dramatic impact in the DRC than elsewhere in the OHADA region. This is because the DRC followed often outdated Belgian statutes whereas OHADA is closer to modern French law.

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