UNITAR TRAINING PROGRAMMES
on Legal Aspects of Debt, Financial Management & Negotiation
This brochure is meant to familiarize readers with UNITAR's training
programmes in the legal aspects of debt, financial management and negotiation.
It will describe the main characteristics of our workshops and seminars,
our training concept and principles, it will give insight into who can
benefit from our programme and how this programme can assist you at
an individual and institutional level.
We also like to invite you to visit our website at www.unitar.org/dfm
where you will find additional information on our resources, On-line
training courses, and interesting links to other On-line resources in
the field of legal aspects of debt and finance management.
UNITAR's programme of training in the legal aspects of debt, financial
management and negotiation forms part of the wide range of training
programmes of UNITAR in the field of diplomacy, economic and social
development. The programme was developed, following a high-level expert
meeting held in Geneva in 1987, to meet the priority training needs
of senior and middle-level government officials in the legal aspects
of debt, financial management and negotiation issues.
Goals and Objectives
The Programme aims:
- To create awareness among senior officers, middle-level debt and
finance managers, law professors, lawyers, economists and accountants
from the government of the importance of the legal aspects of debt
and financial management, and proper conduct of negotiations.
- To provide in-depth training, skills development and follow-up
to lawyers and non-lawyers in debt and financial management and negotiation,
particularly in the legal aspects.
- To strengthen existing human resources and institutional capacities
within government ministries, universities and other selected institutions
to make them self-reliant in conducting their own training seminars,
using local training facilities and experts.
- To strengthen existing ties with regional training institutes and
offering joint courses with partners in Africa and elsewhere.
- To strengthen UNITAR's capacity to meet the training and capacity
building needs of developing countries and economies in transition
with use of new Information Technology.
About our Programme
To date, UNITAR has held over 100 training events in 35 countries in
the field of debt, financial management and negotiation for senior and
middle-level government officials. The programmes are designed to enhance
the existing human resources in the fields of financial management and
negotiation. Each training activity is designed to meet the specific
needs of the country or region in question.
Training on the Legal
Aspects of Debt, Financial Management and Negotiation for Sub-Saharan
Since 1990 this programme has conducted over 50 training events, benefiting
more than 1500 participants from 25 English-speaking sub-Saharan African
countries. Since June 2001 UNITAR also provides training programmes
for French-speaking Africa. The workshops have covered a range of issues
including sources of finance, international borrowing and negotiation,
debt management, understanding multilateral and bilateral loan agreements,
capital and securities markets, project finance, negotiation theory
and practice, privatization as well as arbitration and dispute resolution
mechanisms. These training areas are chosen in consultation with partners
and subsequent to feedback from government sources.
Training on the Legal Aspects of Debt, Financial
Management and Negotiation for Vietnam
Subsequent to a fact-finding mission conducted by UNITAR in Vietnam,
the Institute designed a training programme to address the priority
training needs of senior and middle-level government officials from
the government of Vietnam. Utilizing UNITAR's experience and comparative
advantage in the legal aspects of debt and financial management, a series
of workshops will be and have been conducted, addressed to the Ministry
of Finance, the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the State Bank
of Vietnam, the Office of the Government and other ministries, and parastatals
involved in borrowing. Some of these activities will be part of an umbrella
UNCTAD/UNDP/UNITAR/Ministry of Finance project designed to support the
government of Vietnam in developing comprehensive and sustainable capacity
to manage the external flows to the country, with a special focus on
debt. UNITAR's training effort, in Vietnam is intended to focus on the
legal aspects of financial negotiations, re-negotiation, accessing capital
markets as well as the theories and practices of negotiation.
Partners & Collaborators
Since January 1998, UNITAR has been cooperating with regional training
institutes to provide training on a cost-sharing basis. Today, UNITAR
cooperates with the following partner institutes in English and French-speaking
- Eastern and Southern African Management Institute (ESAMI, Arusha)
- International Law Institute (ILI-Uganda, Kampala)
- Macroeconomic and Financial Management Institute (MEFMI, Harare)
- Pôle-Dette (Yaoundé)
- West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM,
Training events are designed in collaboration with these institutes
in order to join forces, enhance complementarity and avoid duplication
to build capacity in Partner Countries. It also prevents UNITAR from
replicating training programmes.
National Focal Points
UNITAR calls upon a team of focal points or national correspondents
to help in the organizing of the workshops. These persons are usually
based in the partner countries and thus advice on the debt and financial
situation in the country, the set-up and nature of institutions. They
also play a valuable role in raising awareness of our work through their
links with government ministries and fine-tuning the selection of participants.
UNITAR uses national, regional and international experts in the area
of debt and financial management and law to speak at training seminars
and workshops. The practical and theoretical experience of these persons
has been vital in both the preparation of individual programmes and
in their execution. UNITAR has made an Expert database available at
our website, www.unitar.org/dfm.
For whom is the Programme
Target beneficiaries of the UNITAR training programme on the Legal Aspects
of Debt, Financial Management and Negotiation are comprised of all the
institutions involved in the borrowing process. These include the following:
- Technical and Non-technical Ministries (Ministries of Finance, Planning,
Justice, Foreign Affairs, Trade; Attorney-General's Office)
- Central Banks
- Parastatals and major borrowers (such as ports, railways, airlines,
- Public and private banks including development banks
- Trade Boards
- Universities (faculties of law, economics, finance)
- Non-governmental organizations
- Research and training Institutions and network of lawyers dealing
with debt management
The programme is directed at senior and middle-level government officials
actively involved in the field of debt, financial management and negotiation
of financial transactions, which may include formulation of a borrowing
strategy, trade decisions, loan drafting and preparation of documents,
loan negotiation, policy decisions and arbitration.
The participants represent different disciplines (lawyers, economists,
financial experts, accountants) from the above listed institutions,
keeping in view the multidisciplinary approach of the programme, which
means involving both lawyers and non-lawyers to understand each other's
role in the borrowing process.
Comment of a past Trainee
"This workshop was highly practically oriented. It has given
me an insight into raising a negotiating team with the role each person
plays and also to negotiate interests rather than positions. The resource
persons, all of whom were practitioners in the realm of international
finance, were highly impressive and we all benefited from their wealth
of experience."-Mrs. Janet Ramatoulie Sallah-Njie Legal Advisor
to the Central Bank of The Gambia.
Training strategy and programmes
UNITAR aims to support the further development and strengthening of existing
national capacities in dealing effectively with the legal aspects of debt,
financial management and negotiation. To achieve this aim UNITAR works
and collaborates with regional training institutes to develop and provide
training workshops and seminars in subjects relating to debt, financial
management and negotiation. This collaboration, on a cost-sharing
basis, ensures complementarities in our respective training activities.
UNITAR also works closely together with government ministries from partner
countries to evaluate the needs of those countries before the development
of each training activity. This ensures that training is provided in areas
where there is a definite training need. Finally, UNITAR invokes national
experts in its training programmes.
It is hoped that the IT-revolution will overcome traditional hurdles.
It is with this in mind that UNITAR will also be providing on-line training
courses, with close involvement of our partner training institutes. In
the development of the training courses UNITAR draws on its past experience
in training and research and relies on the support of its resource persons.
On-line training makes it possible to reach a wide audience at less cost.
Furthermore, through the National Profile Project UNITAR assists countries
to make a National Profile of the practices, procedures, and regulations,
which govern the conduct of their economic and public financial managerial
systems. This allows an assessment of the adequacy or appropriateness
of the legal infrastructure and recommendations for improvements where
Most training events that UNITAR organizes are provided through regional
workshops. The Institute has found that these workshops create particular
opportunities for an interchange of views and experiences between experts.
The emphasis on regional workshops is supported by the positive comments
from both previous participants and resource persons. As part of our capacity
building strategy, these regional training programmes are designed after
consultation with national governments to determine the practical and
priority training needs. A team of focal points, or national correspondents
gives advice on the national debt and financial management situation and
institutional arrangements and to help in the organizing of the workshops.
On-line Training Courses
As from January 2001, UNITAR is in the process of designing On-line
training courses in the legal aspects of debt, financial management
and negotiation. In the development of On-line training courses UNITAR
will also rely on the involvement of partner training institutes. The
idea of On-line training is to train senior, but particularly middle-level
government officials by using the World Wide Web as a medium. Offering
courses through technology-based training has the advantage of flexibility
and easy access to materials. UNITAR will be able to offer training
to a wider audience and thus reach more people, reach more countries
and accelerate the training process compared to traditional training,
all at less costs. You will find up to date information on our On-line
courses on our website (www.unitar.org/dfm).
"A la Carte" Programmes
Upon request, UNITAR can also offer "à la carte"
training programmes. These are tailor-made training programmes designed
to respond to the specific training needs of the requesting authorities
and to upgrade the skills of senior and middle-level government officials
in the field of debt, financial management and negotiation. The training
seminars will therefore be practice-oriented. Together with the requesting
authorities UNITAR determines the subjects, which needs to be addressed
in the workshops. UNITAR will then take the responsibility to gather
relating training materials and resource persons, who are experts in
the respective subjects. In the past, country ministries and departments
have requested UNITAR to set up specific workshops for their staff.
A multidisciplinary approach,
with a legal perspective
The focus on the legal aspects of most of UNITAR's training programmes
on debt, financial management and negotiation stems from our use of
a multidisciplinary approach in this training. In this approach a legal
perspective is placed in the center, with accounting, economic, fiscal,
and financial views forming the cornerstones. The dedication to this
approach follows from surveys and evaluations, held in partner countries,
which revealed a lack of awareness of the centrality and importance
of legal procedures in debt and financial management. This lack has
lead to negative effects in ability of countries to repay their debts
and manage their finances adequately. UNITAR believes that good legal
support plays a crucial role at every stage in the negotiation and implementation
of a loan agreement and therefore it is highly desirable to include
lawyers at an early stage in a government's policy-preparation for a
particular loan agreement. UNITAR thus addresses a concrete training
need in the legal aspects of debt and financial management in many of
its partner countries.
At the same time, UNITAR fills an obvious gap, since few other training
institutions provides training in the legal aspects of debt and financial
management in a systematic and methodical way. Still UNITAR considers
linkages and cooperation with other training institutes
vital to the success and evolution of its training programmes. It is
with this view that UNITAR designs joint training programmes in collaboration
with local training institutes.
Diagram: UNITAR's multidisciplinary approach
which emphasizes the centrality and importance of the legal aspects
in the borrowing process.
Regional Workshop on the Legal Aspects of Public
The objective of this workshop is to enhance participants' understanding
of the legal
procedures and legal aspects of debt management as well as initiate
a process for
reviewing the adequacy of existing regulatory frameworks for debt management.
-Current developments in international finance and their implications
for debt management.
-Overview of functions of institutional arrangements and considerations
for debt management.
-Regulatory frameworks for debt management.
-Identifying lessons on the global regulatory frameworks.
-Country presentations on regulatory/institutional arrangement frameworks.
-Strengthening the enabling regulatory framework for public debt management.
-Discussions on the developments in the legislative framework.
-The role of the lawyer in debt management transactions and legal
issues in debt transactions.
-Identification of legal areas for review.
-Strategic planning in the negotiation of loan agreements.
- Preparing a national profile to assess the national legal infrastructure
for sound financial management.
-Way forward and capacity building needs
-Participants' Round Table / conclusions.
National Workshop on Drafting Specific Clauses
of a Loan Agreement
The objective of this workshop is to expose participants (borrowers)
to the procedures,
requirements and loan agreements of a range of creditors as well as
to allow time to
understand and draft key clauses in these loan agreements.
-Overview of developments in international finance and their implications.
-Sources of Finance/The IFIs: Focus on the World Bank and the IMF.
-Sources of Finance (export credit agencies & bilateral aid agencies).
-International Financial Markets & International Euro-Loan Agreements.
-Key Clauses (conditions precedent, representations and warranties,
events of default, dispute resolution).
-Key Clauses - continued.
To disseminate information, UNITAR has published a Document Series pertaining
to currently important and relevant issues for practitioners on debt
and financial management. They can be useful as a reference for both
past participants of one of our training activities or other interested
parties. Chapters in this series are published by UNITAR experts following
a particular training event.
UNITAR is currently compiling a series of documents of "Best Practices"
in the field of debt, financial management and negotiation. This will
be made available on-line. It is hoped that these documents will offer
a practical guide for government officials working in international
borrowing, debt management and financial negotiations. The first document
entitled: "Best Practices in the field of External Borrowing"
will be out soon.
UNITAR has developed a user-friendly distance-learning package on debt
and financial management (legal aspects). The basic idea is to have
a training package that can be introduced in universities and training
institutes in developing countries as part of the curriculum, as well
as in government entities. Government lawyers, legal practitioners,
scholars and law students can also use the packages as a reference source.
UNITAR's website offers a listing of the free downloadable documents
in our 'Document
Practices Series' and 'Training
Unpublished documents, presented at UNITAR workshops, and Glossaries
can also be viewed on the website. www.unitar.org/dfm
Impact of UNITAR's Programme in African Institutions
By way of illustration, following are the collated responses
of beneficiary government departments and officials on the direct
impact of UNITAR's Training Programme since 1990. By 'impact'
we mean the extent to which the general objectives set for the
training programme have translated into general development/better
financial management in partner countries. The following responses
were collated as part of a joint UNITAR/Donor Evaluation of
the programme for the African region:
Bank of Ghana (Legal Department) - views
of a team
At the Legal Department of the Bank of Ghana, thanks to UNITAR's
workshops, lawyers have improved their skills to such a point
that they can now give advice to line ministries relating to
loan negotiation and management. Even the Governor has appreciated
the impact of UNITAR's Training Programme in the legal aspects
of debt and financial management and has commended the Legal
Department as most active, efficient, and not delaying matters.
UNITAR's training has also led the Bank of Ghana to modify its
work manuals. These manuals practically serve the purpose of
initiating new comers to the Bank to better understand and upgrade
their knowledge of basic issues relating to their day-to-day
work. These workshops have had the added advantage of showing
the practical relevance of balanced teams in negotiations involving
both lawyers and non-lawyers. Furthermore, presence of various
delegations at UNITAR workshops had the added advantage that
national ministries started talking and discussing issues, which
were paradoxically not discussed or touched on in the past.
Ministry of Justice (Zimbabwe) - views
of a lawyer
The subject of legal aspects of debt and financial management
has never been offered at the university level in Zimbabwe.
It is firstly in this respect that UNITAR' multidisciplinary
approach (though the involvement of accountants, economists,
and lawyers) to training has helped. Secondly, networks of lawyers
created through informal contact at UNITAR workshops has also
helped in keeping in touch with them and in better understanding
their experiences and learning from their mistakes. Since short-term
practically oriented training is very rare in the field of International
Loan Agreements, UNITAR courses are highly sought after at the
The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) was
established in 1965 as an autonomous body within the United Nations
with the purpose of enhancing the effectiveness of the United Nations
through appropriate training and research. UNITAR is governed by a Board
of Trustees and is headed by an Executive Director. The Institute is
supported by voluntary contributions from governments, inter-governmental
organizations, foundations and other non-governmental sources. Since
July 1993, UNITAR Headquarters has been established in Geneva.
UNITAR has the following functions:
- To conduct training programmes in multilateral diplomacy and international
cooperation for diplomats accredited to the United Nations and the
national officials, involved in work related to United Nations activities.
- To carry out a wide range of training programmes in the field of
social and economic development.
- To carry out result-oriented research, in particular, research on
training and to develop pedagogical materials including distance learning
training packages, workbooks as well as software and video-training
- To ensure cooperation with organizations and agencies of the United
Nations and with permanent missions accredited to Geneva, New York
and other cities hosting United Nations institutions.
- To establish and strengthen cooperation with faculties and academic
institutions active in the fields of training for peace and security
and sustainable human, social and economic development, in particular
for the development of research on and for training.
On average, UNITAR designs and conducts worldwide some 125 different
training programmes per year in the domain of economic, political and
social development, for the benefit of more than 5500 national staff,
governmental and non-governmental officials of different levels and
functions and responsibilities.
See also: Activities for 2001 | 2002