Press release

Bloc of countries refuses to discuss transparency in investor-state arbitrations

February 17, 2008

A Working Group of the United Nations charged with revising key international arbitration rules has rebuffed calls by many states and non-governmental organizations to discuss introducing transparency requirements into arbitrations brought by private foreign investors against states.

Many governments, particularly developing and other countries facing investor claims, spoke strongly in favor of transparency and expressed their desire that the issue be addressed immediately. But a number of governments, including governments that proclaim to be "strong supporters" of transparency, spoke against including transparency in the current revision process.

IISD and Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) have issued a joint press release
(PDF - 59 kb)
, as well as a joint paper (PDF - 227 kb) showing how the UNCITRAL Rules can be simply amended to address the needs of investor-state arbitrations.

About IISD

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) is an award-winning independent think tank working to accelerate solutions for a stable climate, sustainable resource management, and fair economies. Our work inspires better decisions and sparks meaningful action to help people and the planet thrive. We shine a light on what can be achieved when governments, businesses, non-profits, and communities come together. IISD’s staff of more than 250 experts come from across the globe and from many disciplines. With offices in Winnipeg, Geneva, Ottawa, and Toronto, our work affects lives in nearly 100 countries.