Europe

European Union member states have signed over 1500 trade agreements with third countries, in addition to some 200 bilateral investment treaties (BIT) between EU members. Non-EU European states are party to over 700 trade agreements. Most of all of these contain investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) provisions.

The EU as such has only ratified one treaty with an ISDS mechanism, the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT), to which 52 European and Central Asian countries are party. The EU is also in the process of ratifying comprehensive trade agreements with Canada (CETA) and Singapore, both of which include ISDS provisions, and is currently negotiating trade deals with the US (TTIP), India, Malaysia, Vietnam and many other countries.

The EU has initiated the majority of disputes if all claims submitted by EU member states are grouped together (300 from the 28 member states put together in 2014). Only 11% of awards in favour of investors from the EU have been made public, corresponding to a total known amount of about €3.5 billion. European states altogether have been targeted in 46% of all cases (2013).

At the end of 2014, the number of intra-EU ISDS disputes amounted to 99, approximately 16% of all cases globally, half of which having been brought under the ECT.

Overall, the Czech Republic, Spain and Poland have been among the ten most frequent respondent states, while the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and Switzerland have been among the ten most frequent home states of the investor.

The most well-known cases include:

Yukos (Isle of Man) vs. Russia: US$50 billion awarded in 2014 to majority shareholders of the oil and gas company (ECT invoked).

Eureko (Netherland) vs. Poland: case settled in 2005 for about €2 billion in favour of the investor, a large European insurance company (Netherland-Poland BIT invoked)

Ceskoslovenska Obchodni Banka (Czech Republic) vs. Slovak Republic: €553 million awarded in 2004 to the investor, one of the largest commercial banks in the Czech Republic (Czech Republic-Slovak Republic BIT invoked)

(March 2016)

TNI | 25-Apr-2018
A key feature of the “modernisation” process is the inclusion of a controversial investment protection chapter with the same characteristics as the one recently included in the Canada-EU trade agreement.
CDE | 25-Apr-2018
Le groupe américain d’énergie Invenergy a annoncé avoir lancé un arbitrage international contre la Pologne, estimant ses droits d’investisseur étranger menacés après que Varsovie a changé les régulations en matière d’énergie renouvelable.
Wind Power | 25-Apr-2018
The Invenergy group has submitted a notice of arbitration against Poland citing violations of Invenergy’s rights as a foreign investor and clear breaches of Poland’s obligations under the United States-Poland bilateral investment treaty.
Revista Pueblos | 24-Apr-2018
Uno de los principales elementos de la modernización del TLC UE-México pasa por incorporar al texto un polémico capítulo relativo a la protección de las inversiones, que tendría las mismas características que el que se incluyó recientemente en el CETA.
Transport & Environment | 24-Apr-2018
The EU should not negotiate on its multilateral investment court project until the Court of Justice of the European Union has established the compatibility of the investment court agreed in CETA.
Daily Nation | 24-Apr-2018
The government risks losing up to Sh500 billion in an international arbitration case against mining firm, Cortec, after it failed to provide Sh100 million in the second mini-budget to pay a UK-based law firm representing it in the case.
El Economista | 24-Apr-2018
Uno de los principales cambios en el acuerdo comercial es que se remplaza el arbitraje de diferencias Estado-inversor con el nuevo Sistema de Juicios de Inversión, esto para asegurar la transparencia.
CIEL | 19-Apr-2018
A report reveals that the recent Achmea ruling by the European Court of Justice could render investment agreements between the European Union or its Member States and non-EU countries illegal.
Observatoire des Multinationales | 18-Apr-2018
Le groupe français a décidé une nouvelle fois, après l’avoir fait contre l’Argentine, l’Égypte ou encore la Lituanie, de saisir un tribunal arbitral international.
Out-Law | 16-Apr-2018
A recent decision under the Energy Charter Treaty by France’s highest court appears to signal a return to a literal interpretation by the French courts of international treaties.

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