investor-state disputes | ISDS
Investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) refers to a way of handling conflicts under international investment agreements whereby companies from one party are allowed to sue the government of another party. This means they can file a complaint and seek compensation for damages. Many BITs and investment chapters of FTAs allow for this if the investor’s expectation of a profit has been negatively affected by some action that the host government took, such as changing a policy. The dispute is normally handled not in a public court but through a private abritration panel. The usual venues where these proceedings take place are the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (World Bank), the International Chamber of Commerce, the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law or the International Court of Justice.
ISDS is a hot topic right now because it is being challenged very strongly by concerned citizens in the context of the EU-US TTIP negotiations, the TransPacific Partnership talks and the CETA deal between Canada and the EU.
Shareholders in the now defunct Russian oil giant Yukos have seized Netherlands-based assets of two well-known vodka brands controlled by the Russian state in their most recent legal move to obtain $57 billion in damages from Moscow.
On February 18, The Hague Court of Appeal reinstated an order of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, which obliged Russia to pay more than $50 bln to the companies associated with former Yukos shareholders in 2014.
The Energy Charter Treaty takes an axe to climate action.
The dispute for snow crabs in Svalbard may set the stage for another dispute concerning the abundant hydrocarbon reserves located in the same waters.
Spanish contractor Ortiz Construcciones y Proyectos S.A. lost an investment treaty arbitration against Algeria brought before ICSID.
On 5 May 2020, 23 Member States of the EU entered into an Agreement for the Termination of Bilateral Investment Treaties between the Member States of the European Union.
A global tragedy at a high cost for taxpayers.
We call on the world community for an immediate moratorium on all arbitration claims by private corporations against governments using international investment treaties.
There is an imminent threat of claims arising from emergency measures, so countries should review how investor-state disputes are handled.
23 EU Member States signed an agreement for the termination of intra-EU bilateral investment treaties.
An internal EU report claims that the UK government has pressured the Armenian government in a two-year standoff between protesters, an international mining company and the authorities.
In recent years, observers have questioned whether investor–state arbitration will or should be a feature of the next generation of free trade and bilateral investment treaties.
The tribunal appointed by the ICSID has issued a procedural order that denies a request made by the Republic of Turkey to bifurcate the arbitration proceeding.
An updated European Commission proposal to reform the Energy Charter Treaty is falling short of what’s needed to reinstate governments’ “right to regulate” in areas like climate change, activists say.
The Paris Court of Appeal has recently sought a preliminary ruling from the Court of Justice of the European Union on the interpretation of the Energy Charter Treaty in the ongoing Republic of Moldova v. Komstroy case.
An arbitration tribunal ruled against Canadian company Edgewater Exploration in its long-standing legal battle with Spain related to the Corcoesto gold project in the northwestern region of Galicia.
In the meantime, Naturgy said it would go back to pursuing a legal claim to $2 billion in compensation its joint venture with ENI was awarded in the case by the World Bank’s ICSID in 2018.
The Tribunal upheld, by majority in a 2 to 1 decision, one jurisdictional objection by Spain and dismissed the claim on that basis.
E Energija received an award of EUR 3.1 million, following ICSID’s April 8 rejection of Latvia’s appeal for annulment of the tribunal’s 2018 award.
Global companies are positioning themselves to use little-known rules in trade agreements to claim millions of dollars in compensation for restrictions imposed during the pandemic.