2.5 Peter Nobel, Das schweizerische Recht vor den Herausforderungen des internationalen Rechts- Bank- und Finanzmarktrecht, excerpt: B, Zweiter Teil; Die wesentlichen Institutionen, Elemente und Ergebnisse der Internationalisierung, I Internationale Institutionen in der Schweiz, in Schweizerischer Juristentag 2012, Das Schweizerische Recht vor der Herausforderung des internationalen Rechts, Zeitschrift für Schweizerisches Recht, 2012, Heft 2, p. 199-213
[international institutions in banking and finance law in Switzerland]
The text at hand appeared as a contribution to the Schweizerischer Juristentag 2012 (The annual meeting of the Swiss Lawyers Association), which had as a leitmotiv “Das schweizerische Wirtschaftsrecht vor der Herausforderung des internationalen und des europäischen Rechts” (Swiss Economic Law facing the challenges of International and European Law). This annual event is the most representative and important event in Swiss law and legal culture and has a great tradition. The Swiss Lawyers Association at great intervals turns to the position of Swiss law and Swiss legal culture in the changing world. It chose for the third time in Geneva in the year 2012 as its theme the position of Swiss law and legal culture in the internationalising world of law after World War II. In 1988 in Bern, the annual meeting dealt with the “Schweizerische Rechtsordnung in ihren internationalen Bezügen” (the Swiss legal system in its international dimensions), see text 2.34 Rezeption des Schweizerischen Rechts of Wolfgang Wiegand in the part on Americanization. The annual meeting of the Swiss Lawyers Association in the year 2000 in St. Gallen had as a leitmotiv “Globalisierung und nationals Wirtschaftsrecht” (globalization and national economic and business law) out of which the text of Heinrich Koller, at the time the chief legal official of Switzerland, on the globalization and internationalization of Swiss business law 2.38. In this part on globalization, the reader can also find an excerpt of the text 2.6 by Carl Baudenbacher – Emerite Professor of Law at St. Gallen University and the President of the EFTA Court – “Contribution of Swiss law to Foreign, International and European Law”.
The text of Peter Nobel is an excerpt of the report on Swiss law faced with the challenges of international law, banking, and financial markets law, which is a sophisticated tour d’horizon on the osmosis and influences of international developments in this important part of Swiss law and legal culture. The excerpt is a timely and interesting description of Switzerland being the home and the base of action, for a series of prominent international organisations dealing with banking and financial markets, which together with the GATS agreement in services of the WTO, according to Nobel, make Switzerland the “development centre” of international finance market law.
The text provides evidence that, despite the growing one way street in the processes of Europeanization and Americanization, Swiss law and legal Culture plays an important role in the new globalization of law.
Nobel’s text points to the fact that Switzerland is a base of institutions important in the legal process of globalization of law. Baudenbacher in his report to the annual meeting of the Swiss Lawyers Association highlights this as well in his preliminary remarks. In that context, he mentions, that for over 100 years, Switzerland has been home to international organizations. To the present, it has signed 24 headquarters agreements. Geneva is a veritable Mecca for international organizations, the entities of the UN and WTO constituting the most important examples. Moreover, there are some 250 NGO’s which have been granted consultative status by the UN. According to Baudenbacher, it is particularly remarkable that Switzerland was the second seat of the UN after New York as well as the seat of GATT long before the country itself became a member of these organizations.
Peter Nobel is a Professor Emeritus in Private, Commercial and Economic Law at the University of St. Gallen and a Professor of Law at the University of Zurich. He is a leading attorney and has experience as a judge at the commercial court of the Canton of Zurich and as an official in the former supervisory Commission of Banks. He is a prolific writer and author of numerous legal texts, an organiser of academic conferences and Editor-in-Chief of the Schweizerische Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftsrecht (Swiss Journal on Economic Law).
The excerpt of the text by Peter Nobel focuses on the influences and radiation of Swiss law and legal culture as a base for international organizations in banking and financial market law. Nobel describes and analyses international institutions and organizations dealing with that part of international banking and finance markets law. Switzerland in that context, according to Nobel, is an active and passive participant in the international legal development. He remarks that this aspect is unconscious as well as under-researched.
The text describes the Bank for International Settlements (BIZ), the Basel Committee on Supervision of Banks and the Basel System, the Financial Stability Board (FSB), (formerly Financial Stability Forum (FFSF)), the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS), the Joint Forum and the WTO with the services agreement of GATT. In his conclusion Nobel uses the title “Switzerland as development center of international financial markets law”. Despite the fact that many important conferences and meetings of those organizations do not take place in Switzerland, Nobel remarks, that most of the work, proposals and concepts are developed in the working groups and working committees of these international organizations, which basically operate within Switzerland. Moreover the organizations carry out their day-to-day operations on Swiss soil and their management activities come out of Switzerland. These institutions have become key international actors in the legal process of globalization and internationalization of international financial markets law.