Investor-State Dispute Settlement and TTIP - Threat or opportunity?

3 June 2014

During the last few months, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or TTIP, has come under much public scrutiny, with many critics being concerned that the agreement might have a negative impact on domestic health, safety and environmental standards. One of the most contentious issues however is the inclusion of the Investor to State Dispute Settlement procedure, or ISDS, a judicial mechanism that gives foreign investors the right to make a claim against the government of the country in which they have invested, and bring that case before an arbitration tribunal if they feel that the rules set out in an international agreement have been breached and the government of that country failed to comply with internationally agreed obligations.

Investors stress that the inclusion of the ISDS procedure in TTIP is necessary to protect their investments, while others fear that it may interfere with governments’ legitimate prerogative to create and implement legislation.