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.

Lexology | 25-Feb-2014
The text of the Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement (KAFTA) was released on 17 February 2014, following the conclusion of negotiations on 5 December 2013.
Farm Weekly | 24-Feb-2014
The Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement (KAFTA) opens up the potential for Korean-domiciled corporations to sue Australian governments - federal, State and local - over decisions that a company believes to have unfairly affected investments they have made in Australia.
SSRN | 20-Feb-2014
Although some IIAs have generated a few disputes for technical reasons, it is rather predictable that Asian states are currently entering an era in which foreign investors are likely to multiply claims.
EurActiv | 13-Feb-2014
Les multinationales pourront intenter des procès à un État membre si ce dernier promulguait de nouvelles lois sur l’environnement allant à l’encontre des « attentes légitimes » des entreprises, selon un chapitre de l’accord commercial entre l’UE et le Canada signé en novembre dernier.
| 11-Feb-2014
Karkey Karadeniz Electricity Production Corporation (Karkey) has filed a memorial to the World Bank’s International Centre for Investment Disputes (ICSID) claiming $2.1 billion damages against government of Pakistan.
EurActiv | 11-Feb-2014
Multinationals will have wide-ranging powers to sue EU states that enact health or environmental laws breaching their "legitimate expectations" of profit, according to a leaked ‘investment chapter’ from the Canada-EU free trade agreement. A separate ‘nature and scope’ document for EU-US free trade talks, which EurActiv has seen, makes clear that similar parameters are foreseen for TTIP.
HBF | 6-Feb-2014
New report from the Heinrich Boell Foundation reviews the implications of an investor-state dispute settlement provision in TTIP for environmental policies and standards
Business Day | 5-Feb-2014
A stir greeted last year’s announcement by the South African government that it would not be renegotiating bilateral investment agreements with major trading partners such as the EU. However, it now seems as if a lot of dust has settled around the Promotion and Protection of Investment Bill, which is set to replace the agreements.
Stock Market Wire | 4-Feb-2014
UK power generator Rurelec has won an historic Bolivian compensation award worth $35.5m, the first granted by an international court against Bolivia.
Fraud Intelligence | 2-Feb-2014
By losing its rights under a bilateral investment treaty against a sovereign due to corruptly securing its investment, Metal-Tech marks a seemingly growing trend of bribery playing a critical role in international investment arbitration disputes.

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