The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) is currently working on how to reform international investment treaties, focusing in particular on those treaties’ provisions enabling investors to sue governments in international arbitration. As an observer organization in this process, CCSI has emphasized that in the context of investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) reform, it is important to first consider what it is that investment treaties aim to achieve, and only then to consider what form(s) of dispute settlement will best advance those objectives. This means not only looking at reform of the existing ISDS mechanism, but also alternatives to it. Having identified various concerns about ISDS, UNCITRAL is now taking stock of potential reform options, and will consider this fall which options to pursue and in what order. To contribute to UNCITRAL’s work, CCSI, together with the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) and the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), submitted this document outlining potential reform options and considerations.
UNCITRAL Working Group III on ISDS Reform: How Cross-Cutting Issues Reshape Reform Options discusses at a general level how issues such as regulatory chill, investor obligations and counterclaims, the rights of non-parties, and damages – issues that were recognized by the Working Group as being important for guiding its efforts and outputs – could inform the contours of reform solutions.
Lorenzo Cotula, Thierry Berger, Lise Johnson, Brooke Güven & Jesse Coleman,
UNCITRAL Working Group III on ISDS Reform: How Cross-Cutting Issues Reshape Reform Options,
Available at: https://scholarship.law.columbia.edu/sustainable_investment_staffpubs/148