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

In 2012, 58 new cases were initiated, which constituted the highest number of known treaty-based disputes ever filed in one year and confirms that foreign investors are increasingly resorting to investor-State arbitration.

The public discourse about the usefulness and legitimacy of the ISDS mechanism is gaining momentum, especially given that the ISDS mechanism is on the agenda in numerous bilateral and regional international investment agreements (IIA) negotiations.

While ISDS reform options abound, their systematic assessment including with respect to their feasibility, expected effectiveness and implementation methods remains wanting. A multilateral policy dialogue could help to develop a consensus about the preferred course for reform and ways to put it into action.