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The Rt. Hon. The Lord Woolf CH delivered a lecture at Nazarbayev University

The Rt. Hon. The Lord Woolf CH delivered a lecture 

at Nazarbayev University


29 August 2017                                                                     Astana

The Rt. Hon. The Lord Woolf CH, former Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales and advisor to the Astana International Financial Centre, delivered a distinguished lecture at Nazarbayev University in Astana, Republic of Kazakhstan.

The lecture, titled “The contribution that will be made to Astana’s prosperity and international reputation by an AIFC Court”, discussed the positive contribution that is expected to be made to Astana’s economic prosperity and international reputation by having an independent commercial court that is staffed by judges of the highest international reputations to resolve disputes in the Astana International Financial Centre. The lecture also discussed the contribution that the AIFC Court is expected to make to the development of legal education within the AIFC.

Introductory remarks were given by Professor Alexander Van de Putte, Chairman of the Academic Council, Mr. Patrick Duparcq, Dean of Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Business and Mr. Yernur Rysmagambetov, Chief Executive of the AIFC Bureau for Continuing Professional Development.

 The lecture was attended by students of the Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Business and representatives of the Astana and AIFC business and legal communities.

The AIFC Court will decide commercial disputes within the AIFC and will apply AIFC law that will be modelled on the English common law and international best practice.  It will apply procedures with the highest international standards of independence, transparency, and efficiency, to attract maximum international investor confidence and investment to the AIFC and the Republic of Kazakhstan. 

It will also work in close cooperation with the AIFC Bureau for Continuing Professional Development, Nazarbayev University, and other leading education and professional institutions, to contribute to the development of legal education in the AIFC and Republic of Kazakhstan.


AIFC. In December 2015 President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev signed the Constitutional Statute “On the Astana International Financial Centre” (AIFC). The aim of the AIFC is to establish a leading international centre of financial services. For the first time in the post-Soviet region, a common law framework will be introduced in the AIFC. English shall be the official language of the AIFC.

The objectives of the AIFC are to attract investment into the economy of the Republic of Kazakhstan through the establishment of an attractive environment for investment in financial services, to develop local capital markets, ensuring their integration with the international capital markets, and develop markets for insurance and banking services and for Islamic financing in the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Lord Woolf is one of the most influential judges in recent British legal history and a global figure on the common law, courts and dispute resolution, and legal education.  He held the two most senior judicial appointments in England and Wales as Master of the Rolls and Lord Chief Justice and was the first Lord Chief Justice to be President of the Courts of England and Wales.  He was a Non-Permanent Judge of the Court of Final Appeal of Hong Kong and the first President of the Qatar Financial Centre Civil and Commercial Court. 

AIFC Bureau for Continuing Professional Development is a newly established professional and development center which envisions providing trainings to over 1000 specialists in the financial industry of Kazakhstan and, ultimately, supplying high quality competent workforce to financial services companies of AIFC and beyond.

Independent AIFC Court. In accordance with Article 13 of the Constitutional Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan "On the Astana International Financial Centre» an independent court of AIFC will  consider civil and commercial disputes between the participants of the AIFC.

AIFC bodies and (or) their foreign employees, disputes relating to any transaction carried out at AIFC and subordinate to the law of the AIFC, disputes transferred to the court by the AIFC upon agreement of the parties.