50293 - BUSINESS AND INVESTMENT LAW OF AFRICAN COUNTRIES
Course taught in English
Go to class group/s: 31
Synchronous Blended: Lezioni erogate in modalità sincrona in aula (max 1 ora per credito online sincrona)
Though there are no prerequisite courses, it is recommended that students have an understanding of basic private and business law, as well as international law. No knowledge of doing business in Africa or any African countries' culture and/or legal traditions is required.
The course aims to provide students with the tools to understand the key challenges and potential issues that economic operators may face while doing business with African companies or investing in African businesses and how legal professionals such as lawyers and counsels may approach them in advising corporations or entrepreneurs. The topics will be discussed in class also through case studies and interactions with practitioners and experts in the area. Students are encouraged to think critically about the complexity and risks of entering into the African continent markets and about the differences of such a variegated region. Students are expected to evaluate the impact of legal transplants from European civil and corporate law and appreciate the African countries' doctrinal inventions. In the end, this course will provide students with a clear roadmap and a solid foundation for an increasingly promising Africa-related cross-border commercial practice.
- Doing Business in Africa;
- Economic integration in Africa: from regional communities to the African Continental Free Trade Area;
- Protection of foreign investments in Africa: African models of Bilateral Investment Agreements;
- African legal traditions;
- Business cases on specific legal issues in international investment and business.
At the end of the course students will be to:
- Understand the main feature of doing business in Africa, in terms of market entry and country risk analysis, as well as features of specific industry sectors (such as oil and gas, banking finance, logistics and retailing);
- Have an introductory understanding of African countries' legal traditions, with a specific comparison with the Italian legal system;
- Have an introductory understanding of the African economic integration process and the main feature of the African Continental Free Trade Area;
- Understand the main features of African Bilateral Investment Agreement models and how they impact investment in Africa, with a specific focus on Italian-African models of agreement;
- Have a practical understanding of how Italian companies operate in the continent through business cases directed by legal counsels active in the region (both from multinational companies and law firms).
At the end of the course, students will be able to:
- Spot legal issues from the facts;
- Apply the legal doctrine to the facts;
- Identify the shortcoming of the rules and regulations;
- Identify the impact of cultural components in business and investments;
- Analyze the possible ways in which a given case might come out.
- Face-to-face lectures
- Guest speaker's talks (in class or in distance)
- Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
- Interactive class activities on campus/online (role playing, business game, simulation, online forum, instant polls)
In addition to lectures, students will interact with guest speakers from the academic and professional sectors - operating on the African continent.
During the course, students will analyze practical cases and engage in additional interactive activities aimed at developing critical thinking.
Attending students must take an intermediate and an end-of-semester exam.
As to the intermediate exam, there will be a forty-five-minute long written exam. No internet access is allowed, and students are not allowed to consult any books or notes.
In terms of exam format: there will be five multiple-choice questions, each bearing 1 (one) point, and two open-ended questions, each bearing 5 (five) points.
As to the end-of-semester exam, there will be an oral exam. The maximum score is 15 points.
The programme of each partial exam for attending students will be communicated in class.
The purpose of the written and oral exams is to examine students' ability to critically understand the data, statutory laws and notions discussed during the course, spot legal issues from a set of facts and apply the law to factual scenarios.
There will be up to five bonus points that students can earn throughout the course. Three of these points are based on students' performances in class, and two more points are based on students' participation in the case studies and interactive class activities.
For the bonus points, the learning outcome is to evaluate data, statutory law and notions critically.
Non-attending students must take a general exam.
In terms of exam format: there will be an oral exam.
The oral exam aims to examine students' ability to critically understand the data, statutory laws and notions discussed during the course, spot legal issues from a set of facts and apply the law to factual scenarios.
The list of readings and multimedia materials (such as mind maps and PPT presentations) will be communicated during the course.