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)

SOMO | 28-Jan-2020
CETA strengthens the legal position of North American companies in the EU and exposes European governments and taxpayers to potential claims.
Finance Uncovered | 27-Jan-2020
When Vietnam signalled it would claim the tax due, oil giant ConocoPhillips issued a pre-emptive legal strike using an arbitration process under the UK-Vietnam bilateral investment treaty.
El Confidencial | 27-Jan-2020
El Gobierno ha recibido una reclamación en EEUU después de aprobar un decreto ley para frenar el alud de arbitrajes por los recortes a las renovables.
ObservAlgerie | 24-Jan-2020
Le holding suisse United Agencies de la compagnie maritime Marine Shipping Co (MSC) demande à obtenir le transfert des dividendes de sa filiale MSC Algeria qui serait bloqué par le gouvernement algérien.
NewStatesman | 24-Jan-2020
Boris Johnson’s plan to diverge from EU rules threatens crucial environmental regulations.
El Confidencial | 23-Jan-2020
La corte arbitral del Banco Mundial dicta un laudo que obliga al pago de más de 80 millones más intereses. La reclamación se elevó por el recorte de ocho instalaciones eólicas de 333MW.
WirtschaftsWoche | 22-Jan-2020
The energy company Vattenfall is demanding compensation from the Federal Republic of Germany. The costs for the arbitration proceedings could exceed 20 million euros this year.
CCFD-Terre Solidaire | 13-Jan-2020
At a time when 3,400 trade and investment agreements protect the interests of transnational corporations, there is no international treaty requiring them to uphold human rights and environmental protection.
CIAR Global | 10-Jan-2020
La demanda de RWE Innogy GmbH y RWE Innogy Aersa S.A.U. contra España fue presentada el 23 de diciembre de 2014, se trataba de la octava demanda iniciada hasta entonces contra el país por las energías renovables en CIADI.
Global Legal Chronicle | 10-Jan-2020
Ukraine settled an investment-treaty arbitration with Russian gas company Gazprom.

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