Prospects for Ensuring Protection for Foreign Investments in light of the Arbitration System of the International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes
Prof. Ben Sahla Thani Ben Ali
Professor of Public Law and Dean
Faculty of Law and Political Science
Abu Bakr Belkaid University – Tlemcen – Algeria
This paper examines the importance of the establishment of the International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes under the Washington Convention in March 1965, with regard to international investment agreements, whether between two or more countries, or between a state and a foreign investor, in the event of disputes, which necessitates the search for solutions to preserve the rights of relevant parties, whether by resorting to the national judiciary or international arbitration, of which the center is one of its most important resources by virtue of its specialization.
With the growth of investment agreements and the efforts of developing countries to advance their economies, especially after the second half of the twentieth century, and at the same time the increase in disagreements and disputes that often lead to resorting to the need for arbitration, which led to an increase in these countries’ turnout to join the Washington Agreement and seek the use of the International Center for Dispute Settlement to seek arbitration.
The research highlights the effects of the withdrawal of three South American countries from the Washington agreement, accusing the center of bias towards foreign investors. The eligibility of this withdrawal, its economic and political motives and effects, and its impact on the future role of the center were discussed in this paper. This is in addition to the extent of the Arab countries’ ability to cooperate and work together to contribute to an amendment to the Washington agreement to make it more balanced. A descriptive and analytical approach was adopted in discussing this issue from its various aspects, so that states and governments can preserve their rights in the investment agreements which they sign so as to avoid falling into disagreements and disputes.
We have reached a number of proposals, the most important of which is urging countries to improve their ability to negotiate when signing investment agreements, and to find a balance between the necessities of development and the requirements of national sovereignty.
Keywords: investment disputes, bilateral agreements, Washington agreement, developing countries, investment promotion.