IIA Issues Note: Latest Developments in Investor-State Dispute Settlement

In 2010, the number of known treaty-based investor–State dispute settlement (ISDS) cases filed under international investment agreements (IIAs) grew by at least 25, bringing the total number of known treaty-based cases to 390 by the end of 2010. This constitutes the lowest number of known treaty-based disputes filed annually since 2001. Since most arbitration forums do not maintain a public registry of claims, the total number of actual treaty-based cases could be higher.

Of the 25 new disputes, 18 were filed with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Dispute (ICSID) or the ICSID Additional Facility, four under the arbitration rules of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), and one with the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC). For two of the new cases, the applicable arbitration rules are unknown. This follows the past trend, with the majority of cases accruing under ICSID (in total now 245 cases) and UNCITRAL (109). Other venues are used only marginally, with 19 cases at the SCC, six with the International Chamber of Commerce and four ad hoc. One further case was filed with the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration. In six of the total of 390 cases, the applicable arbitration rules remain unknown.