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EU vs. Indonesia: Is it really a trade war?
The European Union has slapped countervailing tariffs on imports of subsidized biodiesel from Indonesia. The southeast Asian country has threatened to retaliate but experts say counter tariffs could be self-destructive.
RCEP trade deal will intensify land grabbing in Asia
The RCEP mega-trade agreement if adopted will change how governments decide on rights to land and who has access to it. Therefore, it has the potential to increase land grabbing across Asia – already a huge problem in this region.
New report exposes mining companies suing Latin American countries where communities defend land and environment
We analyzed 38 multi-million dollar claims brought by the mining industry using ISDS and other investment protection laws; in over half, communities are fighting to protect Indigenous territory, water, and more.
The Belt and Road Initiative: Chinese agribusiness going global
The Belt and Road Initiative provides a framework for Chinese investment to enhance existing infrastructure as well as build new production sites and trade routes to better connect China with the rest of the world.
Saving Japan’s seed heritage from “free trade”
Former Japanese minister Yamada joined forces with 150 lawyers that have challenged as unconstitutional both the TPP agreement and the government’s decision to abolish the seed protection law.
Lessons from Aotearoa: The indigenous “exception” clause in free trade agreements
Exception clauses amount to little more than tokenism, and short-change our full rights to determine trade relationships on our land and oceanic territories.
Reforming investor-state dispute settlement: what about third-party rights?
Existing arrangements for third parties to participate in investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) are not designed to protect people whose rights and interests are directly at stake.
Precedent-setting ICSID arbitration award in favor of the Republic of Panama now final and binding
Claimants failed to seek an annulment of the 12 October 2018 award, which dismissed the totality of claimants’ claims against the Republic of Panama.
Corporate sector in China’s Belt & Road: Impact on people’s access to land and water
China has been receiving flak for its conditional investments and loans that are resulting in land and resource grabbing in Asia and Africa.
Maldives’s debt to China creates difficulties for Solih
The Maldives incurred huge debts and the amount owed to China is still being assessed given that the pitfalls of China’s influence over the Maldivian economy.
Trade agreements and the land: Investment agreements and their potential impacts on land governance
While promising economic growth, large-scale land investment deals have caused increased inequality, widespread displacement of people, and destruction of natural resources.
Land reform blow: Zimbabwe must pay foreign investor US$195m; World Bank unit dismisses Harare’s bid to annul award
The ICSID has rejected Zimbabwe’s application to annul an US$195 million award to a German family whose property was expropriated under the controversial land reform programme.
Special economic zones: engines of development or sites of exploitation?
Many SEZs have been associated with compressions of land, labour and human rights. Investment treaties protect investments against adverse regulatory change, including in SEZs. To date, investors have brought at least 20 arbitrations to challenge diverse aspects of SEZ regimes.
Expropriation without compensation? Ask the British.
Zimbabwe is still seeking to have annulled two Awards issued by a tribunal of the ICSID. The disputes concern the government’s expropriation of timber plantations which were first established by Rhodes’ BSAC.
One hundred years of expropriation without compensation
On 29 July 1918, the British judiciary proffered the Empire’s most expressly and egregiously racist justification for the land dispossession of indigenous peoples. Today, an ICSID tribunal continues that mission. No matter which way Zimbabwean’s turn at the polls, they’re still paying for their invasion and occupation by Cecil Rhodes’ British South Africa company...
Indigenous and human rights defenders visiting the EU call for stronger rights protections in agro-commodity business and policies for deforestation-free trade and investment
Citing outcomes from a major trade and human rights forum backed by findings from comprehensive new report, delegation demands political action during visits to Amsterdam, Hague, Brussels and London.
Myanmar road corridors threaten land and livelihoods
Up to half of Myanmar’s population live in areas that could suffer environmental damage from two giant highways unless the ecological risks are considered, according to a new report from the World Wildlife Fund. The planned roads will form part of China’s continent-crossing network of overseas infrastructure known as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
Nasheed accuses China of land grab in Maldives
The land grab was happening because of a Free Trade Agreement, Special Economic Zones and an amendment to the Constitution authorising foreign ownership of land or freeholds.
Total evicts people from their land in Uganda
The French oil company Total evicts people from their land in Uganda to make room for an oil processing facility.
Government regulatory space in the shadow of BITs: The case of Tanzania’s natural resource regulatory reform
Tanzania passed three new laws that significantly change the regulatory landscape governing natural resources and the mining sector in particular.