Asia

Asian countries have signed over 1100 international investments agreements, most of which include the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism.

The Association of South-East Asian Nations or ASEAN (formed of Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam) also provides investor protection under the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA) which was adopted in 2009.

In addition, new trade deals with ISDS provisions currently concern the region: the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

The TPP was sealed in October 2015 between Australia, Canada, Chile, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, the United States and five Asian countries: Brunei, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam. Indonesia and Taiwan have claimed their intention to join in. The treaty has yet to be ratified.

The investment chapter has revealed the deal includes the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism that would give foreign investors the right to bypass national courts and resort to a parallel system of justice specifically made for them.

RCEP is currently being negotiated between the Asian states of Brunei, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam with Australia and New Zealand.

Although still under negotiations, RCEP has been reported to include ISDS provisions. Korea and Japan have submitted proposals likely to be similar to those in their own bilateral agreements and in the TPP text. India should table a different offer.

The Indian government has been considering a revised comprehensive model of bilateral investment treaty (BIT) that would reduce investor rights, compared to other versions of ISDS. An investor would have to exhaust all local remedies before initiating international arbitration. The model BIT is expected to exclude matters relating to government procurement, taxation, subsidies, compulsory licenses and national security.

India has been the most targeted country in the region, with about 15 disputes - the vast majority of which were initiated by West European countries.

End of 2014, Sri Lanka also announced its intention to move away from traditional models of BIT. It quoted thin relationship between BITs and foreign direct investment, past ISDS disputes and the tendency for BITs to constrain domestic policy space as reasons. Sri Lanka favours the enactment of appropriate domestic legislation to protect foreign investment.

In early 2014, Indonesia announced plans to terminate 67 of its BITs, former president Yudhoyono arguing he did not want multinational companies to pressure developing countries. Indonesia is now in the final stage of finalizing a new model of BIT. The country is currently facing a billion-dollar dispute from UK-listed Churchill Mining and a new US$600 million claim from the Indian mining investor India Metals & Ferro Alloys.

(November 2015)

Pulse | 7-Jun-2018
The South Korean government and Elliott Management next week will enter negotiation for an out-of-court settlement over the U.S. activist fund’s $670 million damage claim for the former administration’s interference in the 2015 merger between Samsung units.
The Guardian | 1-Jun-2018
The logic to Trudeau’s action may lie in an obscure and overlooked 2014 agreement to ensure China got a pipeline built
Diario Uchile | 30-May-2018
La aprobación de este acuerdo complementario al TLC firmado en 2016, preocupa a la sociedad civil ya que, al igual que la actualización del TLC con Canadá, considera la protección irrestricta de inversiones extranjeras.
Reuters | 30-May-2018
A Belgian court has lifted a freeze on about $21.5 billion (16.2 billion pounds) in Kazakhstan’s National fund assets imposed after a dispute with a Moldovan businessman, the Kazakh justice ministry said.
Oil Price | 25-May-2018
The amount of the frozen assets, when compared to the US$520 million court award, is pretty hefty, unprecedented.
EIN | 24-May-2018
The Stati Parties have requested to enforce the award issued in their favor including by attaching Kazakh state commercial assets in the United States.
Business Standard | 23-May-2018
India may not accept international arbitration orders annulling tax demands on British firms Vodafone Plc and Cairn Energy.
Indian Express | 21-May-2018
The tribunal, headed by Sir Franklin Berman, will hear the government’s objection to tax matters being covered under the Netherlands-India Bilateral Investment Treaty.
Express Tribune | 14-May-2018
The company exaggerated its future profits by underrating tax and royalty obligations by as much as 61 per cent, officials said.
Korea Times | 11-May-2018
Elliott Associates is demanding more than $670 million in compensation from the government for losses and damages it claims to have suffered regarding the merger of Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries in 2015.

0 | 10 | 20 | 30 | 40 | 50 | 60 | 70 | 80 | ... | 530