Bilaterals.org and Friends of the Earth International have partnered together to create a new tool to support social movements, researchers, journalists and policy makers to analyse the impact of the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism in trade and investment agreements: the ISDS case map. The map is hosted on the ISDS platform at bilaterals.org, a collective initiative of numerous organisations.
The ISDS case map is an interactive tool that brings together 60 significant ISDS cases globally. It provides a short summary of each case, with links to more information. ISDS has become more visible and controversial over the last few years. Civil society groups, unions and even some governments have been mobilising against it, as it creates a parallel legal system for transnational corporations to sue countries where they invest, resulting in harm to the local public.
We would like to thank the following organizations for their support and/or for providing essential research and case studies to put this map together: Transnational Institute, Corporate Europe Observatory, Public Citizen, Indonesia for Global Justice, Focus on the Global South, Friends of the Earth Europe, IA Reporter, International Institute for Sustainable Development and UNCTAD.
ISDS is a key feature of bilateral investment treaties and many free trade agreements, ISDS protects investors against laws or regulations that may affect their expected profits. The mechanism has been used to undermine public policies, such as social and environmental regulations. The disputes are taken to private arbitration panels, not public courts. They put national budgets at risk as rulings in favour of investors come to hundreds of millions of dollars on average, going up to several billions.
Please share this news and use the site and let us know if you have any comments: [email protected]. We aim to update the map regularly and appreciate any inputs, please send us any recent ISDS case studies you have so we can add them to the map.