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Investment-Related Dispute Settlement: Towards a comprehensive multilateral approach

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The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) hosted its third interactive expert meeting to explore ways for reforming investment-related dispute settlement. "Investment-Related Dispute Settlement: Towards a comprehensive multilateral approach" took place in Montreux, Switzerland, on May 23–24, 2016.

The event built on the successful outcomes of the interactive expert meeting hosted by IISD in October 2014. At that meeting, a diverse group of over 20 experts—with expertise ranging from diplomacy, economics and law, to the fields of investment, human rights and trade—explored alternative models for settling investment disputes at the international level to supplement or replace existing mechanisms. Click here to read the 2014 meeting report.

Between the 2014 and 2016 meeting, the European Commission published its proposal for an Investment Court System (ICS), designed to replace the current investor–state arbitration system in the EU–U.S. negotiations of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and incorporated the new EU approach in the investment chapters of the EU–Vietnam Free Trade Agreement and the EU–Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). The goal of a multilateral court system was put on the table. More experts called for a much broader discussion on investment-related dispute settlement: one that is not just a vehicle for investor–state disputes but allows more space to fact-finding and mediation, and is more inclusive in terms of other stakeholders.

In light of these developments, a select group of experts met in Montreux in 2016 to discuss how such a mechanism could be structured and what its institutional home might look like, and advanced concrete and innovative options for reform. The meeting took place in an informal setting, on an off-the-record basis and de-linked from any specific ongoing negotiations.

Click here to read the report of the 2016 meeting, without attribution to commentators.

Event details

  • May 23-24, 2016

  • Montreux, Switzerland