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)

IISD | 10-Aug-2018
An arbitration tribunal found that Spain’s electricity reforms breached its obligation to accord to the investor fair and equitable treatment under the Energy Charter Treaty
IISD | 10-Aug-2018
Un tribunal d’arbitrage a déterminé que les réformes du secteur de l’électricité menées par l’Espagne violaient l’obligation du pays d’accorder un traitement juste et équitable à l’investisseur au titre du Traité sur la Charte de l’énergie.
Las 2 Orillas | 8-Aug-2018
En cinco años de TLC con la Unión Europea, los números de los negocios inclinan la balanza a favor ella. ¿Habrá forma de moverla?
Expropriate | 4-Aug-2018
On 29 July 1918, the British judiciary proffered the Empire’s most expressly and egregiously racist justification for the land dispossession of indigenous peoples. Today, an ICSID tribunal continues that mission. No matter which way Zimbabwean’s turn at the polls, they’re still paying for their invasion and occupation by Cecil Rhodes’ British South Africa company...
Hankyoreh | 2-Aug-2018
This is the fourth ISDS dispute this year in which the South Korean government is embroiled.
FTDES | 1-Aug-2018
Dans le cadre des négociations de l’ALECA, l’Union Européenne a proposé à la Tunisie de mettre en place un mécanisme d’arbitrage entre investisseurs et Etat, sous l’appellation « système judiciaire pour l’investissement » (Investment Court System ou ICS en anglais). Nous interpellons la société civile et les pouvoirs publics pour qu’il soit catégoriquement refusé.
CIAR Global | 30-Jul-2018
En un documento de la CE se ratifica la incompatibilidad del arbitraje inversor-Estado con su legislación cuando se trata de inversiones intracomunitarias, así como la aplicación del Tratado de la Carta de la Energía y el rechazo a los TBI entre Estados miembros.
East African | 30-Jul-2018
Civil society organisations are pushing for a review of the BIT between Tanzania and The Netherlands which they say does not serve the best interests of Tanzania.
CIAR | 26-Jul-2018
Ya son 30 los arbitrajes presentados contra España ante el Centro Internacional de Arreglo de Diferencias relativas a Inversiones (Ciadi) en relación con las reformas energéticas vinculadas con energías renovables.

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