Saturday, January 18, 2014

Gas Natural v. Argentina, ICSID case brief

Gas Natural v. Argentina, ICSID case brief summary
2005 (U2 458)

FACTS
Plaintiff is a Spanish company claiming BIT violation. 
Defendant claims that 1) these were measures of general economic policy (thus this is not a legal dispute subject to ICSID jurisdiction); 2) that it had not given consent to arbitration under ICSID because the BIT they have with Spain requires exhaustion of local remedy before brining a claim; 3) because they are not an investor under BIT (Standing). With regards to 2), Plaintiff responds by saying that under the MFN clause, they should get the treatment that is accorded to US investors under US-Argentina BIT (no need to go to local courts). 

HOLDING
This is a legal dispute capable of being submitted to ICSID adjudication. (U2 471, #22).

ANALYSIS
  • International arbitration provides significant protection and incentives for foreign investors as compared to national courts. 
  • Therefore, the provision in the US-Argentina BIT is more favorable than that in the US-Spain BIT. 
  • Accordingly, the plaintiff is entitled to dispute settlement provisions of US-Argentina BIT. (U 477, # 31) 
  • Plaintiff has standing to bring claim pursuant to ICSID rules and Spain-Argentinean BIT. (U 479, #35).

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