New publication in RGSL Research Papers series by RGSL Alumni Vladlena Lavrushyna "European Union Policy in Respect of the Settlement of Investment Disputes".
The European Union, being one of the most significant players in international investment relations, started shaping its common investment policy only recently, after acquisition of exclusive competence over Foreign Direct Investments in 2009. The specific nature of the EU, its complicated multinational structure and organization, lack of experience in participation in investor-state arbitration, as well as diversity of investment regimes developed over 50 years individually by each Member State, made this task quite challenging for the Union. This paper examines the outcome of the first reforms introduced in the context of common EU investment policy, analyses the Union’s approach to the protection of FDI and investment dispute resolution and scrutinises the rules on EU involvement in investor-state arbitration under the new Financial Responsibility Regulation (FRR) of 2014. The aim is to establish whether the Regulation on managing allocation of financial responsibility between the EU and its Member States will introduce more certainty and predictability to the system of investment protection and dispute settlement, and, consequently, advantage the attractiveness of the EU as an investment destination.
Several problematic aspects of the Regulation, explored in this paper, relate to the imbalance between Commission and MS rights in allocation of responsibility, the possibility of violation of exclusive jurisdiction of the Court of Justice of the EU in the process of realizing some FRR provisions, and a legal loophole that may allow the Member States to avoid arbitration under ICSID rules. The paper also providessuggestions as to improving disputable Regulation provisions that may help to avoid the negative scenario that may come into play in the process of its implementation.