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)

TNI | 14-Dec-2017
Impacts of investment arbitration against Latin America and the Carribbean.
Derecho Internacional Público. Costa Rica | 11-Dec-2017
En este caso, el Tribunal decidió postergar su decisión sobre jurisdicción, hasta analizar los argumentos de fondo, en virtud de la complejidad que reviste el caso.
Latin America Herald Tribune | 8-Dec-2017
Rusoro Mining Ltd. has announced that it has obtained a judgment against the Republic of Venezuela in the Superior Court of Justice in Ontario, Canada, of over US$1.3 billion.
Romandie | 7-Dec-2017
L’Equateur va verser une indemnisation de 337 millions de dollars à la compagnie pétrolière américaine Burlington, filiale de ConocoPhillips, afin de régler un litige vieux de dix ans.
La República | 6-Dec-2017
El Centro Internacional de Arreglo de Diferencias relativas a Inversiones (Ciadi) notificó hoy al país su laudo jurisdiccional en torno al caso de la mina Crucitas, que se encuentra en arbitraje internacional e involucra a un grupo inversor canadiense.
Conflictos Mineros | 6-Dec-2017
El pasado 2 de diciembre se hizo pública la resolución del tribunal arbitral que veía la demanda de la empresa canadiense Bear Creek, en contra del Estado peruano.
Diario Correo | 5-Dec-2017
El desarrollo del proyecto de plata Santa Ana, ubicado en Puno, fue detenido por un Decreto Supremo en el 2011. Tres años después, la empresa ha ganado el fallo ante el Ciadi.
Swiss Info | 5-Dec-2017
Ecuador pagará una indeminzación de USD 337 millones a la petrolera estadounidense Burlington, cuyo contrato fue dado por terminado en 2010, para zanjar un litigio de casi una década, informó este lunes la Procuraduría General ecuatoriana.
The Financial | 4-Dec-2017
Under the terms of the agreement, ConocoPhillips will recover a total of $337 million from Ecuador.
Mining Weekly | 4-Dec-2017
The arbitrators agreed with the company that Peru had breached its obligations to the company under the Canada-Peru Free Trade Agreement when it expropriated the company’s Santa Ana silver project, in 2011.

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