Once upon a time, international arbitration in investment treaties was something western governments cheerfully promoted. Claims were overwhelmingly against states in the “global south”, while claimants were usually from western Europe and North America.
Now that’s changed, and so have western attitudes to international arbitration. Once a niche interest, arbitration has become an object of public protest.
Donald Trump’s election to the US presidency last year came on the back of promises to overhaul his country’s biggest trade agreement, NAFTA. Negotiations are now under way with Canada and Mexico, but the US’s attitude to the deal’s dispute resolution clauses is still in flux. The EU’s approach is clearer: as the European Commission said recently, “ISDS is dead”. This issue, GAR looks at how these newly shifting attitudes might be reflected in negotiating language – and whether they will be reciprocated by their negotiating partners.
In Asia, arbitration is strengthening. For some years now it has benefited from a sometimes intense competition between Hong Kong and Singapore – as seen most recently by both cities’ contrasting but competing adoptions of third-party funding reforms. This issue we focus on Singapore, looking at how the city state has amplified its offering to include investment treaty arbitration, and welcoming new institutions like the ICC and PCA.
We also have a new arbitral centre in the Caribbean, tips for enforcing funded awards in an anti-funding environment, and look at a case which has troubled observers of arbitration in Africa.
In this magazine:
- ISDS v Trump and the EU: the gathering hostility to investor-state dispute in the West
- Singapore’s success
- The African elephant in the room: Getma International vs. Guinea
- An epicentre for arbitration in the Caribbean
- GAR Live Energy: Why do claimants’ damages fall far below the amount claimed?
- GAR Live Frankfurt: Are quantum issues getting the attention they deserve?
- GAR Live BITs: Do tribunals’ response to corruption “fit the crime”?
- Enforcing in an anti-funding environment
- Do Born’s BATs still have wings?
- Language problems discussed in Taipei
- European young groups put focus on practice building at Austrian retreat
- Case numbers rise in China
- Cyclical criticisms
- Book Review: GAR Guide to Damages in International Arbitration