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The Master's of Law (LLM) degree in International Trade and Investment Law in Africa (TILA) is the first of its kind to be offered in Africa.

It establishes a higher education and training programme based in and focused on, Africa with full exposure to the international world of trade and investment.

The degree was developed under the auspices of the Centre for Human Rights and is presented by the University of Pretoria and the University of the Western Cape in partnership with Makerere University in Uganda, American University Washington College of Law in the USA and the University of Amsterdam and Erasmus University in the Netherlands.

About the LLM (International Trade and Investment Law in Africa)

Students spend the first part of the full-time one-year degree in South Africa (with alternate intakes at the University of Pretoria and the University of the Western Cape), and they have the option, depending on available funding, of spending the second semester at one of the assigned overseas partner universities.

Classes are presented by leading academics from partner universities; representatives from international organisations such as the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the World Bank; practising lawyers; and representatives from South African institutions, including the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) and the Competition Tribunal.

Who can apply?

Individuals from all African countries are invited to apply for admission to study for the Master’s Degree (LLM) in International Trade and Investment Law in Africa at the University of the Western Cape.

The minimum requirement is an LLB degree (or its equivalent) with an overall mean of 60 - 65 (second class pass) and on exceptional occasion, it is the mean of 55 plus ten years relevant work experience in the relevant field(s). Applicants must motivate why they believe their experience will help them in their LLM performance.

Limited scholarships may be available, but cannot be guaranteed at this point. Should funding be required, include proof of financial status and motivation for financial assistance in the application.

Partners

The LLM in International Trade and Investment Law in Africa is presented by the University of Pretoria in partnership with:

  • University of the Western Cape, South Africa
  • Makerere University, Uganda
  • University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Erasmus University, Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • American University Washington College of Law

First semester

Students spend the first part of the full-time one-year degree in South Africa (with alternate intakes at UP and UWC), and they have the option, depending on available funding, of spending the second semester at one of the assigned overseas partner universities.

The South African component provides the students with an introduction to international trade and investment law, with an African focus, while the advanced courses offered by the overseas partners provide students with the opportunity to specialise. The SA component, therefore, covers a variety of issues relating to international trade and investment, including an introduction to the basic principles of international economics.

The following 14 modules are offered in consecutive blocks over the first semester:

  1. Introduction to: legal research and writing (including general aspects of project management); computer skills; and to basic communication through short presentation (e.g. on cultural diversity).
  2. Accounting and International Development Economics: basic accounting, reading financial statements, principles of international economics.
  3. Introduction to International Law: focus on public and private law; state responsibility, treaties, sovereignty, nationalisation, private international law, international development of law.
  4. Global Economic Institutes: an overview of institutions and changing functions, Role of UNCTAD (development in Africa, independence), African Development Bank, IMF etc.
  5. Regulation of International Trade: WTO - general introduction, the concept of free trade, agriculture, dumping etc.
  6. International Intellectual Property Law and Transfers of Technology: TRIPS, WIPO, WTO etc., licensing, pharmaceuticals.
  7. Forms of International Business: international sales, international finance, competition.
  8. Regulation of Foreign Investment in Africa: private and public aspects; agreements and privatisation, international insolvencies.
  9. Dispute Settlement in International Business Transactions: an overview of public and private aspects, arbitration.
  10. International Business and Environmental Law and Social Considerations: environment, ethics, human rights etc.
  11. Introduction to European Union Law.
  12. Introduction to African Economic Relations: including GSP, AGOA, EPA, Cotonou, SA/EU TDCA, etc. African Regional and Sub-Regional Organisations: AU, PTA, SADC etc.;
  13. Implementation of International Economic Agreements into Domestic Law in Africa.
  14. The role of Africa and African lawyers in International Trade Negotiations and the role of lawyers in International Economic and Business Transactions.

Second semester

Students spend the first part of the full-time one-year degree in South Africa (with alternate intakes at UP and UWC), and they have the option, depending on available funding, of spending the second semester at one of the assigned overseas partner universities.

Course format

Classes are presented by leading academics from partner universities; representatives from international organisations such as the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the World Bank; practising lawyers; and representatives from South African institutions, including the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) and the Competition Tribunal.

Instruction is in English by means of formal lectures, practical exercises, visits to trade organisations, extensive library and IT access. A limited number of scholarships are available.

The duration of the course is one academic year, full-time.

  • Next intake: January 2023 (University of Pretoria)
  • Deadline for applications for the 2023 intake: 31 July 2022

How to apply

Click here to Apply

This course is modelled largely on the LLM/MPhil in Human Rights and Democratisation in Africa (HRDA) offered since 2000 as a partnership between UWC, UP and other law faculties in Africa.
The programme runs parallel with an MCom programme on the Economics of Trade and Investment in Africa, also presented as part of the partnership between UP and UWC.

Past Intakes 

  • January 2003, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2003, University of Pretoria
  • July 2004, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2005, University of Pretoria
  • July 2006, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2007, University of Pretoria
  • July 2008, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2009, University of Pretoria
  • July 2010, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2011, University of Pretoria
  • July 2012, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2013, University of Pretoria
  • July 2014, University of the Western Cape
  • July 2015, University of Pretoria
  • July 2016, University of the Western Cape
  • January 2017, University of Pretoria
  • January 2018, University the Western Cape
  • January 2019, University of Pretoria
  • January 2020, University the Western Cape
  • January 2021, University of Pretoria
  • January 2002, University of the Western Cape

Current Intake

  • January 2022, University of the Western Cape

Next Intake

  • January 2023,University of Pretoria

For more information on the application process for the 2023 intake, please contact

Dr R. Jonathan Kabre
Postdoctoral Researcher | LLM (TILA): Programme Manager
Tel  +27 (0)12 420 6200
Fax +27 (0)86 580 5743 
rj.kabre@up.ac.za

LIMITED SCHOLARSHIPS ARE AVAILABLE.