Legal & regulatory frameworks

UNCTAD: E-Commerce and Law Reform Programme – Developing legal frameworks to build trust


For e-commerce to succeed and spur development gains it must be trusted by both buyers and sellers of online goods and services. This well-established programme helps you develop the most appropriate legal, institutional and policy frameworks to build confidence in e-commerce.

The wide range of areas covered includes consumer protection, cybersecurity, intellectual property and electronic signatures. Ultimately, the aim is to help you build a legal environment that promotes secure online business and economic wellbeing.

For whom

Policy makers
Law makers
Legal professionals

Services offered

Building Skills
  • Learn how to draft legal frameworks through online and face-to-face training sessions, organized by region and by country
  • Exchange and learn about e-commerce legislation harmonization through regional training activities
Policy Support
  • Gain access to expert reviews and inventories of e-commerce legislation
  • Get help assessing, revising and drafting legal and regulatory frameworks
  • Participate in validation round tables with national stakeholders to discuss and finalize draft legal frameworks
  • Get expert advice for parliamentarians on enacting effective laws

Meet the beneficiaries

A harmonized framework for cyberlaws

Since its beginnings, E-Commerce and Law Reform has introduced the legal dimension of ICTs to:


LDCs worldwide


developing countries in Africa


developing countries in Asia


developing countries in Latin America & the Caribbean

Under the programme’s guidance, the East African Community became the first African region to adopt a harmonized framework for cyberlaws.

Through its services, the programme has also helped bring about the following:

6 laws, acts or bills

revised in 3 countries between 2014 and 2016

6 regional reviews

published about e-commerce legislation harmonization

500 participants

at Expert Group Meetings on cyberlaws and data protection in 2015 & 2016

« The workshop was an invaluable opportunity to exchange experiences and discuss key issues on commerce and cyberlaw harmonization. Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive and I am confident the knowledge gained will help us develop an enabling environment for the regional ICT sector. »
Ms. Angela Sinaswee-Gervais

Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Public Administration, Trinidad and Tobago

The first online tool for a global mapping of cyberlaws

The UNCTAD Global Cyberlaw Tracker, allows you to map laws on e-transactions, cybercrime, data protection and online consumer protection. It helps you to know where you stand thanks to Comparative Regional Reviews – and plan your next steps accordingly.

Check here to know where you stand!



Towards e-commerce legal harmonization in the Caribbean