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Alba establishes mechanisms for legal defense against arbitral claims filed by transnationals

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Adital, 23-4-13

Freely translated by Anoosha Boralessa (July 2015); not revised by or any other organization or person.

Alba establishes mechanisms for legal defense against arbitral claims filed by transnationals

The Bolivarian Alliance for the People of Our America (ALBA ) agreed yesterday (Monday) in Ecuador, to create a new regional mechanism to provide a collaborative defence in international arbitration proceedings, notably in respect of claims filed by transnational corporations against Latin American countries.

The decision was taken in the course of the “First Ministerial Conference of Latin American States Impacted by the Interests of Transnationals”, that took place in Guayaquil in the province of Guayas (West).

The final declaration of the meeting resolved to establish an Executive Committee of the Conference, that will be entrusted to “design and to implement measures of mutual support at both the political and legal level.” Such measures are to help countries within the region, that find themselves in the midst of disputes with transnationals, that are submitted to arbitration.

Equally, the Committee will have “to coordinate a collaborative defence of legal actions through teams of international legal experts and professional lawyers” as well as “to devise strategies for communication, as a counterweight to the global campaigns undertaken by transnational companies”.

The host of the event, Chancellor Ricardo Patino, emphasized that “today marks the birth of a new mechanism for defense and collaboration in issues concerning investments and transnationals issues”. In this regard, Ecuador will take on the interim coordination of the Committee.

Specialists from Ecuador, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela shall be entrusted to prepare a draft. They will have three months to prepare the draft, [which must be ready] before the Second Meeting, which will take place in Caracas.

Alba will also establish an “International Observatory” financed through contributions from countries that form part of the Conference. [This Observatory] will be entrusted to support Defendant States and to publish updates on the disputes.

This [Observatory] also must identify those proceedings that permit “auditing, evaluating and monitoring” the “action of the international investment arbitral tribunals”.

The resolution also supports the Union of South American Nations (Unasur) project to establish its own arbitration court for trade and investment disputes, as an alternative to the current arbitral system.

The notice is in the Presidential Press of Venezuela.

 source: ADITAL