The first half of the year has been a rollercoaster when it comes to BITs and ISDS, in particular in Europe. Several developments at various levels can be distinguished with one common denominator: for better or for worse, the European Union (EU) and EU law have become one of the key drivers in shaping international…

Over the past two months, the judgment by the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) in Slovak Republic v Achmea BV, hereinafter referred to as “Achmea”, has created much discussion among arbitration practitioners. Its reasoning and implications have already been addressed in several Kluwer Arbitration blog posts, available here, here and here. The…

The world after the  Achmea v Slovakia decision focuses on the question about the future of ISDS in relation to intra-EU BITs. At the ASIL conference on the 6 April 2018, a representative of the EU observed the decision in the Achmea case as one that was perhaps a natural consequence of the intricacies of…

As it has been extensively discussed on this blog, in its landmark Achmea case the Court of Justice of the EU (“CJEU”) found the arbitration provision of the bilateral investment treaty (“BIT”) between the Netherlands and Slovakia to be incompatible with EU law. This decision potentially affects the effectiveness of the roughly 200 BITs concluded…

The Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and the Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters of 27 September 1968 was superseded by Council Regulation (EC) 44/2001 of 22 December 2000 on Jurisdiction and the Recognition and Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters. The latter was subsequently repealed by Regulation (EU) 1215/2012 of the…

The CJEU judgement issued in the much-discussed (here and here) C-284/16 Slovak Republic vs. Achmea case has every chance of becoming a game changer in the field of the investment protection regime within the EU. Where does that leave the protection of investors within the EU? The message of the CJEU to those who welcomed…

In the midst of challenges to the very legitimacy of Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) celebrated its 50th anniversary and embarked on the fourth ICSID Rules amendment process in ICSID history. The previous amendment processes brought notable additions to the ICSID Rules, such as enhanced transparency in…

Many arbitration lawyers’ initial reaction to the CJEU’s Achmea judgment resembles the first three of the famous “five stages of grief” (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance). Some deny Achmea’s relevance under international law, others angrily dismiss it as unreasoned and politically motivated, while many attempts to “bargain” a way out for intra-EU arbitrations under…

On 6 March 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union issued a long-awaited decision on a preliminary ruling from Germany’s Federal Court of Justice in the Slovak Republic v Achmea case (available here and already addressed in a different KluwerBlog entry here) [Case C-284/16]. By concluding that the arbitration clause in the Slovakia-Netherlands…

The Opinion delivered on 19 September 2017 by Advocate General Wathelet in the case C-284/16 Achmea has already been widely commented on in the international arbitration community. The views are either critical or approving, but so far, they have mostly been focused on whether a particular legal point made by the Advocate General was right…

The development of effective instruments for collective redress is a widely discussed topic among European politicians, consumer protectors, legal scholars and dispute resolution lawyers. The professional discourse was recently fuelled by the Volkswagen emission scandal (also referred to as “emissiongate” or “dieselgate”), which, at least in the US, was already subject to collective actions. Another…

I. Introduction On 19 September 2017 the Advocate General (AG) to the Court of Justice to the European Union (CJEU) Melchior Wathelet delivered his long-awaited Opinion in Case C-284/16 Slowakische Republik v Achmea BV. As already explained in another post, Bundesgerichtshof (“German Federal Court of Justice”) requested a preliminary ruling from the CJEU on the…

Reliance on the investor-state dispute resolution (ISDS) mechanism of the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) is booming, with at least ten new cases registered in the past year alone. Notably, nine of these ten cases – and almost 60% of all publicly reported cases initiated to date – have been brought by an investor from a…

On May 30, 2017, Volterra Fietta and the University of Notre Dame hosted a debate of whether foreign investors can sue the United Kingdom for a hard Brexit. The recorded video is now available for viewing. Markus Burgstaller and I presented the case that foreign investors may have viable claims against the UK, while Jeremy…

My previous blog post on this topic dealt with two issues stemming from the juxtaposition between the current arbitration legal framework and necessary due process requirements which are specifically developed for antitrust damages proceedings: (1) the necessary regulation of complex arbitration specifically designed for antitrust damages matters, and (2) the need to address information asymmetry…

The Member States of the European Union (“EU”) had a task that a very few has managed to complete: to implement the Directive 2014/104/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 November 2014 (“Damages Directive” or “Directive”) by 27 December 2017. According to the website of the EU Commission, only ten Member…

On 8 March 2017, the Romanian Parliament sent to the Romanian President for promulgation the Law allowing for the termination of the Bilateral Investment Treaties between Romania and other Member States of the European Union (“Intra-EU BITs”). This comes after Poland adopted a similar measure at the beginning of January 2017 and with the European…

The recent developments concerning the signature of the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and the EU have illustrated the paralysis and inability of the EU and its Member States to deliver economic prosperity and create jobs – which used to be one of the very reasons for establishing the EU and giving it…

On the 7th of July 2016 the Court of Justice of the European Union (“Court” or “CJEU”) published the judgment in the Genentech case (Case C 567/14), awaited with great interest both by IP and competition practitioners, on one side, and by arbitration practitioners, on the other. IP and competition law practitioners’ interest lies in the…

European institutions have established the European Account Preservation Order procedure (“EAPO”) to facilitate the cross-border debt recovery through the attachment of bank accounts (see here the Regulation (EU) No. 655/2014, which will apply from 18 January 2017, except for Denmark and the United Kingdom). The EAPO in particular provides creditors with a measure alternative to national…

Juliane Kokott, Advocate General to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), gave the 2016 Mackenzie-Stuart Lecture on 26 February 2016 at the University of Cambridge, Faculty of Law. In her lecture, Ms. Kokott explored the conflicts between investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) and European Union (EU) law, as regards (1) conflicts between…

A ruling of the Austrian Supreme Court, the Oberste Gerichtshof in Vienna, Austria, of earlier this year (see ruling of 18 February 2015, 2 Ob 22/14w) raises anew the much debated question of the type and intensity of supervisory court review of European Union (EU) competition law awards. Readers may recall that EU competition law…

Accentuate Ltd v. ASIGRA Inc. [2009] EWHC 2655; Fern Computer Consultancy Ltd v Intergraph Cadworx & Analysis Solutions Inc [2014] EWHC 2908 (Ch) In 2009, a senior libel judge sitting in the English High Court held that an arbitration agreement was “null and void” or “inoperative” because it purported to apply a foreign law which…

 ‘By putting its head in the sand, the ostrich can see no problems, and if it can’t see any problems, they don’t exist”[1] To what extent can legal systems differ? Can these differences be legitimate enough to collapse a “conflictive” legal system? These two ambitious questions are difficult to be answered in one go, and…