The DRC is a civil-law jurisdiction with the main provisions of its legislation based on the Napoleonic Civil Code of 1804. On 11 February 2010 President Kabila promulgated Law No. 10/002 authorising the DRC’s accession to the Organisation pour l'Harmonisation en Afrique du Droit des Affaires of the Organisation for the Harmonisation of Business Laws in Africa (the “OHADA”). The OHADA Treaty officially became applicable law of the DRC for all OHADA subject matters on 12 September 2012 and the DRC is now the 17th member state of the OHADA Treaty.
Signed on 17 October 1993 in Port Louis Mauritius, the OHADA Treaty has as its objectives the harmonisation of business laws in Member States (Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroun, Comoros, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Guinean Equatorial, Mali, Niger, Center Africa Republic, Senegal, Chad, Togo and Democratic Republic of Congo) through "common rules". The OHADA Treaty achieves these objectives mainly through the enactment of certain uniform acts on various areas of business law and the establishment of a Common Court of Justice and Arbitration (CCJA) to ensure harmonised interpretation of the OHADA Treaty and its uniform acts.
The accession of the DRC to the OHADA Treaty has brought significant improvements to a number of previously-out-dated fields of DRC business law such as corporate law, security interests, insolvency, the transport of goods by road, the recovery of debts, arbitration, etc. However, during this initial period of adoption of the OHADA Treaty, uncertainties as to the application of the OHADA laws in the DRC are to be expected. Due in part to the DRC's use of out-dated Belgian statutes and case law and the fact that the OHADA laws are very similar to French law, courts, judges, scholars, practitioners and the legal community in general in the DRC might need some time to adjust to the changes brought by OHADA laws.
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Democratic Republic Of Congo - Experience
Doing business as a defense contractor
We advised an American company that supplies command and control, communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems and products, avionics, ocean products, training devices and services, instrumentation, space, and navigation products in respect of pricing, negotiating, executing and operating support and maintenance contracts in DRC and on the country regulatory framework in general.
We advised a South Korean multinational electronics company on various queries relating to applications that they want to implement in DRC. We also reviewed the terms and conditions as well as the privacy policies of each of the applications.
We advised a leading independent data, voice and IP provider in eastern, central and southern Africa on their proposed share transfer in DRC and on shareholder equity.
We advised an American non-profitable organization on the review of their short form meetinghouse lease for general use in DRC. We also advised on the appropriate type of visa that shall be used by their employees and the requirements to become citizen of the Democratic Republic of Congo