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)

Alternatives Economiques | 21-Mar-2019
De nombreuses menaces qui pèse sur les populations locales – les populations autochtones, de petits fermiers – sont le fait d’entreprises.
Churchill Mining | 20-Mar-2019
The annulment committee has dismissed Churchill’s application for annulment of the award for the dispute arising out of the revocation of the mining licenses that made up the East Kutai Coal Project in East Kalimantan.
Lexology | 15-Mar-2019
According to the Svea Court of Appeal, Achmea does not preclude states and investors within the European Union from entering into an arbitration agreement regarding a specific dispute.
TASS | 15-Mar-2019
A Berlin court has ordered former shareholders of Hally’s Parsons Green, linked to now defunct oil company Yukos, to compensate Russia its legal costs to the tune of 188,000 euros.
Renewables Now | 15-Mar-2019
The ICSID ruled against Spain in a case brought by NextEra Energy Inc regarding the US utility’s lost investments in two 49.9-MW concentrated solar power plants.
Kluwer Arbitration Blog | 14-Mar-2019
The ongoing Rockhopper case may become a benchmark for future cases on the horizon, following Italy’s decision to crack down on hydrocarbon explorations and extractions.
Proactiveinvestors | 12-Mar-2019
The company said illegal blockades have prevented access to the Amulsar gold project since late June 2018.
Clifford Chance | 11-Mar-2019
UK investors could seek to move their investments to jurisdiction such as Singapore and Hong Kong where they can take advantage of investment treaty protection, if a potential new Labour govenment were to nationalise public services.
Times of India | 11-Mar-2019
Cairn Energy said it expects the long-running arbitration process against the Indian authorities over retrospective taxation to be concluded before late 2019.
CNCD-11.11.11 | 8-Mar-2019
“Vous pourrez réglementer mais parfois vous devrez payer”. avait prononcé un représentant du gouvernement canadien concernant le CETA.

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