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A World Court for Corporations: How the EU Plans to Entrench and Institutionalize Investor-State Dispute Settlement

Author: CIEL, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, & Seattle to Brussels Network, Published on: 1 December 2017

...The European Commission...[has proposed]..a multilateral mechanism for investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS)--referred to by the Commission as a Multilateral Investment Court...The proposed global investor court threatens to lock in the highly controversial ISDS system, an undemocratic scheme that undermines national authority and prioritizes corporate profits above all else...[T]he proposed investor court is just one in a long line of efforts made by the EU to enshrine and expand the current system of corporate privilege...

[There are] many reasons to oppose the Multilateral Investment Court..Institutionalizing ISDS on a global level will legitimize and entrench a parallel legal system designed to empower transnational corporations...By allowing corporations to bypass domestic legal systems, the court would subsidize the cost of corporate litigation used to protect private property interests while undermining the sovereignty of national courts...The global investor court would allow international businesses to enforce legal rights without requiring them to fulfill their legal obligations...The global investor court would deny access to those harmed by foreign investors...The court would further deter states from regulating in the public interest...The adjudicators would be the same biased arbitrators who have decided past ISDS disputes...A global institution for ISDS will exacerbate the elevation of investor’s rights over international human rights and environmental laws...

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Related companies: Chevron Deutsche Bank Goldcorp (now Newmont Goldcorp) IBM Newcrest Vodafone