It is well settled in the practice of ICSID tribunals that the general rule of treaty interpretation embodied in Article 31(1) of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (“Vienna Convention”) applies to the interpretation of the Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States (“ICSID Convention”). While…

Legal Reasoning: Interpreting and Applying the Law When analysing the process of legal decision-making what might first come to mind is the dichotomy between the interpretation and the application of the law. These terms, in some circumstances, may be employed interchangeably due to the strong link that exists between them. Indeed, jurisdictional clauses in investment…

The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (VCLT) was adopted and opened for signature on May 23, 1969, and entered into force on January 27, 1980. In the fifty years since the VCLT was opened for signature, it has become universally regarded as one of the most important instruments of treaty law. It has…

On 24 October 2019, the European Commission announced that the EU Member States have reached agreement on a plurilateral treaty for the termination of all ca. 190 intra-EU bilateral investment treaties (BITs). The agreement follows the political Declarations of the Member States issued in January this year in which they explained the consequences they are…

Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) is facing significant opposition in its current form. Whilst some parties are engaged to find new common ground, others have unilaterally implemented measures aimed at ousting investor-state arbitration altogether. Over time, more and more attention has been paid to the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and its…

It is said that states lose more times than investors in investment arbitration. Indeed, ICSID surveys reveal that while investors receive an award of costs in 41.4% of the cases, states receive a similar award of costs only in 23% of the cases, even when jurisdiction is fully declined. A case where a state prevails…

Background In early June 2017, Banco Popular Español S.A. (‘Popular’) was placed into resolution under the European Union’s (‘EU’) Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (‘BRRD’) and the Single Resolution Mechanism Regulation (‘SRMR’). It was the first – and only, to this day –case where the Single Resolution Board (‘SRB’), as the European resolution authority, intervened…

The numerous interpretations of the Full Protection and Security Standard (“FPSS”) have complicated the findings of tribunals for many years. A number of tribunals have found that this standard applies only to physical protection. Meanwhile, other tribunals have extended this standard to cover all types of protection from physical to legal and commercial. Also, more…

Introduction With less than a month to go before the latest EU-UK divorce date, the UK Supreme Court resumed its hearing in Micula et al. v Romania 2018/0177, relating to the enforcement of the widely discussed ICSID award against Romania. With the UK grappling with its future relationship with the EU, it is interesting timing…

In his post of 30 August 2019, Pablo Pérez-Salido discussed the proposal at UNCITRAL’s Working Group III for the establishment of an Advisory Centre on International Investment Law (ACIIL). This post seeks to make a case for such an Advisory Centre. It complements the excellent Secretariat document on the same subject, which is the basis…

For all the talk about third party funding, little has been said about the buying and selling of claims outright – what I call “claims trading”. A forthcoming article is the first to survey all the known instances of claims trading in international investment arbitration. It reviews more than forty decisions in which tribunals or…

This post analyses a series of ICSID arbitration awards against Venezuela since 2014 to understand a pressing concern in many investment arbitrations today: how to deal with the risk of expropriation in quantum calculations. Getting this right is critical to ensure that host states do not benefit from their own wrongful conduct and that investors…

With over $3 billion invested by Vedanta Resources in Zambia since it became a shareholder in Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) in 2004, it is a less optimistic turn of events with Vedanta Resources and fellow shareholder, the government-owned Zambian State Mining Company ZCCM-IH (ZCCM), being at loggerheads in arbitration. In this post, we examine what…

Introduction There are parallel initiatives currently considering a potential reform of the international Investor-State Dispute Settlement (“ISDS”) system. Particularly, the work presently taking place at the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (“UNCITRAL”) by its Working Group III (WGIII) is one of the forums that continues to attract attention as we get closer to…

The tendency of arbitral tribunals constituted under the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) to reject intra-EU jurisdictional objections, despite contrary views expressed by most EU member states, was recently continued in the case of Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW) and others v. Kingdom of Spain (ICSID Case No. ARB/15/45). The decision made by an ICSID tribunal over a…

Introduction  The Prague Rules have been widely discussed over the past few months, among others, on this blog. Yet, to the knowledge of the authors, none of those discussions has specifically addressed the application of the Prague Rules to investment arbitration. Although the Prague Rules may have been drafted with a view to making commercial…

States can regulate as part of their sovereignty and can give away a part of their regulatory freedom by making commitments to foreign investors, such as the obligation to compensate investors for expropriation. Unless a treaty removes or modifies a particular norm of international law, international law on expropriation, including customary law, should apply. The…

We are happy to inform you that the latest issue of the journal is now available and includes the following contributions:   Lucy Greenwood, Revisiting Bifurcation and Efficiency in International Arbitration Proceedings In 2011, the author published an analysis of available empirical data on bifurcation of disputes in this journal. The article, ‘Does Bifurcation Really…

Discussions of corruption carry strong moral sentiments.  After all, the abuse of public office for private gain erodes people’s trust in government and institutions, makes public policies less effective and fair, and siphons taxpayers’ money away from schools, roads, and hospitals. More generally, broad-based corruption weakens the foundations of a healthy economy, degrades social norms,…

Background Since its announcement in 2013, China has invested more than US $120 billion into the target countries along the Belt and Road Initiative (“BRI”) on infrastructure projects ranging from ports and railroads to pipelines. Central Asia will become part of nearly the entire major trade corridor identified under the BRI. Hence the BRI presents…

  The Danish Institute of Arbitration (DIA) and ICC Denmark hosted Copenhagen Arbitration Day earlier this year. Discussion took place on a wide range of topics such as the criticism of arbitration, diversity and the Prague Rules. The day began with three lunchtime seminars. The first took place at the University of Copenhagen, where four…

Recently published arbitral awards provide insight into Tribunals’ reasoning when the quantum of a claim is challenged for being too uncertain or speculative. Typically, Claimants will not only claim costs incurred up to the date of the breach or expropriation, but they will also claim compensation for future profits in a but-for scenario. However, a…

The use of Emergency Arbitrator (“EA”) procedure is not frequently deployed in investment treaty arbitration, compared to its success in the commercial space. Despite calls for caution, three sets of major arbitration rules have promulgated EA procedure for investment disputes, i.e., Arbitration Rules of Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (“SCC Rules”), SIAC Investment Arbitration Rules (“SIAC…

Prof. Dr. Jelena Perović, from the University of Belgrade (Serbia) and Dr. Nataša Hadžimanović, from Gabriel Arbitration (Zurich, Switzerland), launched the Round Table on Arbitration in 2018 as a forum to discuss controversial issues, share experiences and highlight new trends in arbitration. The 2nd Round Table on Arbitration took place in the magnificent rooms of…