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7 Feb 2023

Jorge Liboreiro, Euronews

European Commission recommends EU exit from Energy Charter Treaty

In U-turn, Brussels recommends EU-wide exit from controversial Energy Charter Treaty, 7 February 2023

In a notable U-turn, the European Commission has proposed a collective and coordinated exit of all 27 member states from the controversial Energy Charter Treaty (ECT), an obscure international agreement that protects energy investors from unexpected circumstances that might hurt their profit expectations.

With 53 signatories, it is considered the most litigated investment deal in the world.

The policy change comes after the European Commission's proposed reform to modernise the treaty collapsed in late November due to the opposition of Germany, France, Spain and the Netherlands, who had previously announced plans to unilaterally withdraw.

In the end, the executive, who had for months defended member states were better inside a revised ECT rather than out, appears to have given in to the growing opposition.

"Despite the Commission's successful efforts to negotiate a modernised Energy Charter Treaty in line with the negotiating mandate given to us by the member states, there is no qualified majority in the Council to adopt the modernised Treaty," a European Commission spokesperson told Euronews...