Advocate General Bot pleads in favor of the Investment Court System in EU bilateral treaties
- 29 janvier 2019
This opinion follows a request to the EU Court of Justice filed by Belgium on 7 September 2017 regarding the compatibility with EU law of the mechanism for the settlement of disputes provided in the CETA.
Belgium questioned specifically the effects of that mechanism with regard to the exclusive jurisdiction of the EU Court of Justice over the interpretation of EU law, the general principle of equal treatment, the effectiveness of EU law, and the right of access to an independent and impartial tribunal.
The Advocate General’s opinion is of particular importance since similar Investment Court Systems have been included in the EU-Singapore, EU-Viet Nam and EU-Mexico agreements and are being negotiated in future treaties with third countries.
Interestingly enough, Advocate General Bot highlights that the approach adopted by the EU Court of Justice in Achmea (C-284/16) – concluding that the arbitration clause in an intra-EU bilateral investment treaty (BIT) between the Netherlands and Slovakia is incompatible with EU law –, cannot be transposed to the present case since the mechanism provided in the CETA presents sufficient guarantees with regard to the safeguard of the autonomy of EU law.
The opinion of the Advocate General does not prejudge the opinion of the Court.
See AG Opinion in Opinion 1/17: