International Economic Law

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UNCITRAL and ISDS Reform: What to Expect When You’re Expecting

From September 5 – 16, the delegates of UNCITRAL Working Group III were back in Vienna to continue discussing ISDS reform. While it was possible for registered delegates to watch the proceedings online, it was only possible to make interventions in person. This approach, which we understand to be a general UN approach, decisively shifted the Working Group’s centre of gravity back to the physical room. The people – and the margins – were back. The margins were busy as delegates saw each other again after two years online. Many delegates arrived early and left late to have more time with colleagues. The passage of time came up often in these conversations, and was palpable in the room and process more generally. Many new, often younger, faces were in the room this time alongside the familiar faces, as some officials who have been with the process rotate into new positions within government, get promoted, or move on.  Delegates seemed eager to get back to work with a full six hours of meeting…

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EU – New Zealand FTA: Towards a new approach in the enforcement of trade and sustainable development obligations

 On 30 June 2022, the President of the EU Commission and the New Zealand Prime Minister jointly announced the successful termination of the negotiations for the creation of a new free trade area (FTA) between the European Union and New Zealand. As for New Zealand, the commercial liberalization provided by the new FTA would determine a…

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ISDS reform and air guitar: A response to Grant and Kieff

In issue 2020(2) of EJIL, we published an empirical study concerning the public perception of investment arbitration. Our article presents the results of four experiments that we conducted to assess which factors mostly affect the public acceptance of investor-State dispute resolution outcomes. In our study we tested a number of possible factors that influence public…

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A Not So ‘New Dawn’ for International Economic Law and Development: Towards a Social Reproduction Approach to GVCs – A Rejoinder to Bernard Hoekman

I thank Bernard Hoekman for taking the time to engage with my article ‘A Not So “New Dawn” for International Economic Law and Development: Towards a Social Reproduction Approach to GVCs’, and for providing me with the opportunity to clarify some of its arguments. He and I agree that concerns about social reproduction are central to…

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A new variety of rights-based climate litigation: a challenge against the Energy Charter Treaty before the European Court of Human Rights

In the last couple of years, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) has become a hotspot for rights-based climate change litigation. At the time of writing, seven cases are pending before the Court, with applicants seeking to challenge various aspects of domestic climate change laws and policies in the various respondent states, arguing that they violate their…

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