The News (Pakistan) | 15 Feb 2015
Dar briefed on BIT regime
ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister, Ishaq Dar here on Saturday chaired a briefing on Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) regime of Pakistan.
The chairman Board of Investment (BOI) apprised him that incidentally the world’s first BIT was signed on November 25, 1959 between Pakistan & Germany.
Pakistan has signed 48 BITs since then and most of them were signed in late 80s & mid 90s.
BOI held the view that due to excessive trend of litigation, different countries have reviewed stance on signing BITs and Pakistan also needed to revise its policy in the matter.
The minister said that BoI may first update information on BITs so far signed and ratified. He observed that existing BITs should be reviewed as a number of these had completed their tenure. He also consented to the idea about having a Pakistan template for future BITs. The option of mediation forum or ADR Center to be set up in BOI could also be considered, he added.
A Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT), it may be added, establishes terms and conditions for investment by nationals and companies of one state in another state. Internationally BITs are considered instruments to boost investors’ confidence in the host country’s economic policies & system.
It is to be noted that the BOI Ordinance 2001, clause 9 (m) (Functions of BOI) mandated BOI to negotiate and finalise agreements for protection and promotion of investment with other countries. BOI undertook study on matters pertaining to BITs and shared its views with finance minister suggesting the way forward.