Financial stability

Investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) is one of the greatest threats to the re-regulation of finance. ISDS empowers the very firms that financial regulation seeks to govern. These firms can bypass host country domestic courts and directly challenge domestic policies in a parallel system of justice.

Financial and non-financial firms have increasingly used ISDS provisions in trade agreements to challenge financial regulations and emergency financial stability measures.

Most well-known cases include:

• Investors vs. Argentina: When the country froze its utility rates and devaluated its currency in response to its 2001-2002 financial crisis, it was hit by over 40 lawsuits from investors, including Suez, Vivendi (France) and Anglian Water (UK). By January 2014, Argentina had been ordered to pay a total of US$980 million (various BITs invoked).

• Poštová Banka (Slovakia) & Istrokapital (Cyprus) vs. Greece: the Slovak bank and its Cypriot investor sued Greece on account of the restructuring of the country’s sovereign debt, after having bought Greek government bonds at a knockdown value. The investors lost the case. (Greece-Slovakia & Cyprus-Greece BITs invoked).

• Saluka (Netherlands) vs. Czech Republic: the Dutch investment corporation filed an ISDS dispute against the Czech government for not bailing out a private bank, in which the company had a stake, in the same way that the government bailed out banks in which the government had a major stake. The bailouts came in response to a widespread bank debt crisis. The investor was awarded US$236 million (Czech Republic-Netherlands BIT invoked).

(March 2020)

Economic Times | 9-Jan-2018
Vodafone Group has said it would agree to consolidate its two international arbitrations initiated against India in connection with a tax demand of ₹11,000 crore, if the country were to agree as well.
Economic Times | 3-Jan-2018
Since the auto major has approached the Madras High Court, remedy under a treaty would now be barred, the Government said.
Crime Moldova | 15-Dec-2017
The Republic of Moldova has won the case in the international process initiated by the Russian companies Evrobalt and Kompozit in May and June of 2016, after the NBM suspended their rights and forced them to sell their shares at Moldova Agroindbank.
Reuters | 14-Dec-2017
India’s top court allowed Britain’s Vodafone to initiate a second arbitration process under an India-UK investment pact .
The Hindu | 5-Dec-2017
The Tamil Nadu government moved the Madras High Court for an interim stay on carmaker Nissan Motor from proceeding with international arbitration over the alleged non-payment of incentives being claimed by it from the State.
Reuters | 1-Dec-2017
Nissan Motor réclame plus de 770 millions de dollars (646 millions d‘euros) à l‘Etat indien pour non versement d‘aides publiques et a ouvert une procédure d‘arbitrage internationale.
Reuters | 1-Dec-2017
Japanese automaker Nissan Motor has begun international arbitration against India to seek more than $770 million in a dispute over unpaid state incentives.
Bloomberg | 15-Nov-2017
An international arbitration tribunal in February will begin trial on Vodafone’s challenge to India using a retrospective legislation to seek Rs 22,100 crore in taxes.
New Indian Express | 27-Oct-2017
The Delhi High Court today allowed Vodafone Group representatives to participate in the process of appointing a presiding arbitrator in its international arbitration process against India in connection with a tax demand of Rs 11,000 crore.
The Market Mogul | 23-Oct-2017
Noting the ad hoc nature of investment arbitration under the ICSID, it is not surprising that two tribunals adopted different interpretations

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