Dr. Vilawan Mangklatanakul
Thailand’s Candidate to the International Law Commission (ILC) 2023-2027
Dr. Vilawan Mangklatanakul, Director-General, Department of Treaties and Legal Affairs, is a career diplomat who has been with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand since 1995. She has built her expertise in important areas of international law including diplomatic and State immunities, treaty law, intellectual property and international economic law. She also has a keen interest in alternative dispute settlement and international law on climate change.As an avid practitioner, Dr. Vilawan has extensive experience on issues of diplomatic and State immunities, ranging from providing advices to cases in both home and foreign jurisdictions to drafting domestic legislation granting privileges and immunities to international organisations and participants of international conferences. On a regional front, she was actively involved in the negotiations of the Agreement on the Privileges and Immunities of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Throughout her career, Dr. Vilawan has applied her legal expertise for the benefit of international law development, particularly in the context of the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Her invaluable contribution in Working Group of UNCITRAL on arbitration has been widely recognized as Thailand continues its active role in reflecting the perspectives of developing countries in the global initiative on the investor-state dispute settlement reform.
Dr. Vilawan has played a key role in the legal team of the Royal Thai Government in various international disputes, including the case concerning the request for interpretation of Temple of Preah Vihear judgment at the ICJ, WTO dispute settlement cases on Thailand – Customs and Fiscal Measures on Cigarettes from the Philippines and Thailand – Subsidies concerning Sugar, and Thailand’s investor-state arbitration cases. She also negotiated the Protocol to the ASEAN Charter on Dispute Settlement Mechanisms, the Dispute Settlement Chapter in the Japan-Thailand Economic Partnership Agreement and participated in the FTA negotiations between Thailand and the United States. Furthering from her expertise in the field of dispute settlement, Dr. Vilawan successfully advocated for the establishment of Thailand’s Committee on the Protection of International Investment to systematically manage investment arbitration cases.
As a continuation of her experience in international trade law, Dr. Vilawan has developed great interest in other related issues including digital economy, the use of artificial intelligence as well as environmental issues and how they relate to various areas of international law. Among many other national committees that Dr. Vilawan belongs to on the domestic front, she is a member of the Committee on Law of the Sea and Maritime Boundaries of Thailand, deliberating on national policies on the law of the sea, as well as the important questions of climate change and its effects on sea-level rise and what the legal community could do to address environmental problems.
In academia, Dr. Vilawan gives lectures extensively on international law on the topics including treaty law, international trade, investment and dispute settlement. She has often been invited as speaker at various international conferences and seminars on the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods and international investment issues. She is currently member of the Board of Directors of Thailand Arbitration Center.
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