The Energy Charter Treaty: Endgame in sight?

March 22, 2023 11:00 am - 12:30 pm CET

(Open to public)

Is 2023 the year for a coordinated EU withdrawal from the Energy Charter Treaty?

The Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) is at a crossroads. Recently, the European Commission has hinted for the first time that a withdrawal of the EU and Euratom from the treaty is unavoidable. The negotiated reform proposal failed to gain the support of EU member states last year, seven of which have already announced a withdrawal. In a December resolution, the European Parliament has also voiced its clearest call on the Commission to facilitate a coordinated exit.

This webinar delved into the pressing legal questions surrounding the withdrawal from the ECT, including the treaty's sunset clause and the implications of the treaty as a mixed agreement. It also assessed the political momentum for further withdrawals both within and outside the EU. The webinar provided a comprehensive overview of the most pressing legal and political issues facing the ECT and brought together leading experts from academia, policy, and civil society.

The workshop discussed:

  • Neutralization of the sunset clause and implications of Article 16.
  • Status of ECT as mixed agreement and consequences for the decision-making process.
  • Implications for the extra-EU context: UK, Switzerland, and other non-EU ECT Contracting Parties.


  • Federica Violi, Associate professor, International and European Union Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam
  • Nicolas Angelet, Associate tenant of Doughty Street Chambers, London, and professor of international law in the Université Libre de Bruxelles
  • Josè Manuel Gutierrez Delgado, Head of the International Arbitration Department of the Abogacía General del Estado in the Spanish government

The webinar was organized by IISD, CIEL and ClientEarth.