Public Health and Plain Packaging of Cigarettes

Public Health and Plain Packaging of Cigarettes

Legal Issues

Edited by Tania Voon, Andrew D. Mitchell, Jonathan Liberman and Glyn Ayres

The book offers an in-depth exploration of relevant domestic and international legal questions in fields such as intellectual property, constitutional law, health, trade and investment. The authors’ analysis sheds light on broader questions relating to the capacity of governments to regulate tobacco products and the tobacco industry, and to regulate in the interests of public health more generally. The answers to these questions are of vital interest not only to Australia but also to the international community, with states’ regulatory sovereignty increasingly being challenged in local and international courts and tribunals.

Chapter 7: Implications of International Investment Law for Plain Tobacco Packaging: Lessons from the Hong Kong–Australia BIT

Tania Voon and Andrew D. Mitchell

Subjects: law - academic, health law, intellectual property law, international economic law, trade law, international investment law, public international law


* Tania Voon and Andrew D. Mitchell INTRODUCTION I. In their attempts to discredit Australia’s plain packaging scheme1 at an international level, tobacco companies are turning not only to the law of the World Trade Organization (‘WTO’),2 but also to international investment law. Australia has 26 investment protection agreements in force:3 21 bilateral investment treaties (‘BITs’),4 and five preferential trade * This research was generously supported by the University of Melbourne pursuant to the Vice Chancellor’s Staff Engagement Project Grants. We are grateful to Thomas Bland and Suzanne Zhou for helpful research assistance and to the able staff of the Law Research Service of Melbourne Law School. All opinions expressed here and any errors are ours. 1 Tobacco Plain Packaging Bill 2011 (Cth), as introduced into the House of Representatives of the Australian Federal Parliament on 6 July 2011. See also Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia, House of Representatives, Tobacco Plain Packaging Bill 2011: Explanatory Memorandum (6 July 2011); Australian Government, Consultation Paper: Tobacco Plain Packaging Bill 2011 – Exposure Draft (7 April 2011); Australian Government, Tobacco Plain Packaging Bill 2011 – Exposure Draft (7 April 2011). 2 See Chapter 6 in this volume. 3 Australia’s bilateral investment treaty with Chile has been superseded by the investment chapter in Australia’s preferential trade agreement with Chile: Commonwealth, Parliamentary Debates, Senate, 1 March 2011, 881 (Stephen Conroy). 4 Agreement between the Government of Australia and the Government of the Argentine Republic on the Promotion and Protection of Investments, and Protocol, signed 23...

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