KUALA LUMPUR: Four law students from Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) represented the region at the recent world finals of the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) International Arbitration Moot Competition. The event, held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, saw the team placed third, behind Paris Bar Law School and Harvard University. The UiTM team were the Asia-Pacific champions after beating 19 other teams in the regional competition held in Seoul, South Korea, in August. The FDI Moot competition is divided into three regional rounds for countries in the Asia Pacific, South Asia and Africa as qualifying rounds for the finals. The students who took part in Seoul were Elena Cho (team captain), Amiza Murad, Fathan Alfian, Izzudin Zahidi and Zhafir Rahmat while in Buenos Aires, team captain Amiza led Fathan, Izzudin and Iffah Yahya. In Seoul, the team also won the Best Claimant Brief award (for their written submission) and the Best Oral Team while Izzudin won the Best Oralist award. UiTM vice-Chancellor Professor Emeritus Datuk Dr Hassan Said said that UiTM supports students in such competitions that give them a better understanding of the real court environment. The FDI Moot involves arbitration in the area of international investment law, particularly on the legal relationship between states and foreign investors forged through bilateral and multilateral investment treaties. Teams would have to represent both the state and the foreign investor in the moot, and defend their clients to win the case. Amiza said that participating in mooting competitions helps aspiring lawyers gain a practical understanding of issues that arise out of obligation between states and foreign investors. “By bringing academicians, practitioners and future lawyers together, a forum is created not only to discover emerging talents but new developments in the fields discussed,” she said. The team’s coaches were UiTM law faculty moot alumnus and Best Law Graduate 2016, Sarilnezam Salleh, and Associate Professor Dr Irwin U.J. Ooi. Amiza was excited that the team finished in the top three, just behind Harvard Law School. “UiTM is now home to one of the world’s top law schools and we are proud to be its students,” she said. “We have been so inspired by what we have learned and hope to be back next year, to try and win this competition. “We want to thank the faculty for standing behind us all the way and to UiTM for funding our participation in the global finals.”
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