Latin America

Latin America countries have signed over 650 trade agreements. They have been the most targeted by investor-state disputes (ISDS). About 35% of all ICSID arbitration cases have involved a Latin American state.

Argentina itself has faced almost 60 ISDS disputes, about 9% of all cases, making it the most targeted state globally. Venezuela, Mexico and Ecuador have been among the ten most frequent respondents in the world.

Well-known cases such as Chevron vs. Ecuador or Pac Rim vs. El Salvador have originated in significant environmental damages caused by corporations. Philip Morris is currently suing Uruguay over its anti-tobacco law.

Besides, Chile, Mexico and Peru are party to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) with nine other Pacific Rim states. Its investment chapter has revealed the inclusion of ISDS provisions that would undermine public health, the environment and other public-interest ‘safeguards’.

The most well-known cases include:

• Chevron (US) vs. Ecuador: in 2013, an arbitration court ordered Ecuador to pay Chevron US$106 for breach of contract (Ecuador-United States BIT invoked). Meanwhile in a separate case, Ecuador’s highest court fined the oil giant US$9.5 billion for dumping billions of gallons of toxic waste into the rainforest. Both cases are unresolved.

Occidental Petroleum Corporation “Oxy” (US) vs. Ecuador: in 2012 Ecuador was ordered to pay US$1.77 billion to the investor, an oil exploration and production company, for breach of contract. Sentence was reduced to US$1 billion in November 2015 (Ecuador-United States BIT invoked).

• National Grid PLC (United Kingdom) vs. Argentina: about US$50 million awarded in 2008 to the investor, a multinational electricity and gas utility company (Argentine-United Kingdom BIT invoked).

(October 2015)

CIAR Global | 24-Apr-2017
El Salvador, a través de un comunicado de la Fiscalía General de la República, informó ayer que ha ganado el arbitraje internacional que mantenía con la constructora costarricense MECO SA por la construcción de un tramo de carreteras, conocido como proyecto Fomilenio.
Financial Post | 24-Apr-2017
Canadian miner Gran Colombia Gold has filed a US$700 million lawsuit against Colombia under the Colombian-Canadian free trade agreement after the government ordered the company to cease operations at the El Burro site in Marmato.
El Mundo | 21-Apr-2017
La minera tiene 120 días calendario, iniciados el 28 de marzo, para presentar recursos legales ante el CIADI.
Tech Dirt | 21-Apr-2017
ISDS is an attempt to remove the risk of investment from companies, and place it squarely on the public’s shoulders, without any quid pro quo.
El Intransigente | 19-Apr-2017
Es tras la decisión de la empresa demandante de retirar la denuncia que había realizado en el 2003, por u$s 960 millones
Reuters México | 19-Apr-2017
El Salvador congeló bienes y cuentas bancarias de la minera australiana-canadiense OceanaGold ante su negativa de cancelar al país centroamericano ocho millones de dólares por los gastos procesales que incurrió durante un litigio en un tribunal internacional, informó el martes la Fiscalía General.
Reuters | 19-Apr-2017
El Salvador froze bank accounts and assets belonging to OceanaGold Corp after the mining company refused to pay the country $8 million as mandated by an international court.
El Mundo | 18-Apr-2017
Transnacionales petroleras buscan ahogar a la estatal por medio de varias acciones.
AITEC | 18-Apr-2017
L’objectif de ces nouvelles négociations est d’amener l’instrument commercial liant l’UE et le Mexique au niveau des accords commerciaux comme le CETA, référence désormais brandie par la Commission européenne pour l’ensemble de ses négociations futures.
CIAR Global | 14-Apr-2017
El grupo empresarial español Lidercón ha presentado una demanda de arbitraje ante el Ciadi, contra Perú invocando el Tratado Bilateral de Inversiones España-Perú de 1994 por un conflicto relacionado con un contrato por la inspección técnica de vehículos en Lima y Callao.

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