Trade and investment agreements cannot transform China into a Western-style market economy or turn it into a democracy.
For many people affected by resource extraction, it is the prevailing legal regime that dis-embeds and disintegrates, because investment treaties can protect ventures that upend their lives with little scope for voice or redress.
From colonisation to investor-state dispute settlements, rich countries have sought to exploit and influence their poorer counterparts for centuries, but how did globalisation in its current form come to be?
A free trade agreement and double taxation treaty are among several frameworks being worked on by the UAE and Israel to increase trade and investments flows between the two nations after they normalised relations last year.
Investment treaties largely replaced colonial gunboats as a way to continue to exploit the resources of foreign countries.
The federal cabinet said to have deferred bilateral investment treaty (BIT) strategy for Pakistan proposed by the Board of Investment (BOI) to draw a roadmap for the future bilateral investment treaties.
The overreach on display in the aggressive use of ISDS lawsuits by multinational corporations is just one part of a broader trend in recent decades in which the ability of states to regulate their economies in their own interests.
The government of Ghana has expressed its interest in concluding the negotiations with Japan on the Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT), which has been pending since April 2014.
The short-sighted German-driven agreement betrays the European project and poses a major economic and political problem for the rest of the West.
Russia and South Korea have agreed to speed up the talks about a free trade deal covering services and investment, South Korean Foreign Minister said.
Pakistan has reportedly decided to scrap most of its existing Bilateral Investment Treaties as these pacts are shrinking the government’s policy space with respect to adopting measures of public interest.
The EU is due shortly to sign a major investment deal with China, but Germany in particular will be concerned that the sanctions may destabilise economic relations with China.
An investment deal between China and the European Union restricts Europeans from investing in Chinese media and entertainment companies but does not block Chinese firms from investing in European ones.
Without thinking about environmental action beyond emissions and enacting binding agreements on protecting workers’ rights, China and the EU fail at making meaningful change for both labour and environmental justice.
Beijing and Brussels are trying to finalise what has been described as ’the biggest investment agreement’ in history. But will it ever be ratified?
Besides protection and dispute settlement, the BIT also includes several key changes in terms of application and restriction.
Hong Kong democracy activists have warned the EU it must not ratify its planned new investment deal with China at a time when Beijing is tearing up international obligations to the people of Hong Kong.
The China-EU comprehensive investment agreement (CAI) addresses important issues of market access, regulatory cooperation and sustainable development, but does not include sections on investment protection and ISDS.