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Argentina: Unidad Popular thinks the country should withdraw from ICSID

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Freely translated by Anoosha Boralessa in 2015 for

Argentina: Unidad Popular thinks the country should withdraw from ICSID

During a public hearing, a member of parliament, Claudio Lozano made the request to follow in the footsteps of countries such as China, India and Brazil, all countries that have not ratified bilateral investment treaties.

Members of parliament Claudio Lozano, Fernando Pino Solanas, Liliana Parada and the Martin Hourest (from Buenos Aires) led a discussion before a public hearing analysing proposals to nullify bilateral investment treaties (BITs) and to generate the conditions to enable Argentina to withdraw from the ICSID (International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes).

The meeting took place in Room I of the Annex of the Members of Parliament. At the meeting, Lozano held that “Argentina must either follow the example of Brazil that was never a party to the ICSID Convention, or Bolivia, Venezuela and Ecuador, that have withdrawn from it.”

“The global experience indicates that there is a greater volume of foreign investment in countries where greater restrictions apply. This is illustrated by China, India and Brazil. None of them are party to the ICSID Convention nor have they ratified BITs,” insisted the member of parliament.”

For Lozano, “the failure to review the BITs (totalling 56) that Argentina has signed by creating a normative framework and defining supranational authorities with the consequent declaration of nullity and the recovery of legal sovereignty, evidences the lethargy and irresponsibility of this government. This is reflected in both the Fragata Libertad case and the decision of Justice Griesa, which went in the favour of investment funds with bonds, or the nearly 17 billion dollars in ICSID claims. This has transformed Argentina into the most sued country before ICSID.

Former members of parliament also participated in the meeting, including Eduardo Macaluse and Marta Maffei, as well as representatives from ATTAC, Movimiento Territorial de Liberacion, CTA, the Buenos Aires Lawyers Association, the Foundation for Social and Political Research, FETERA, the Latinamerican Network on Debt, Development and Rights (Latindadd), Cultura Indigena, MOCASE and EDI.