The Regionalisation of Laws and Policy on Foreign Investment
Elgar International Investment Law series
Chapter 4: Recent phenomena: The rise of plurilateral agreements with wider scope
If the core of international investment regulations remains based on BITs and bilateral PTAs, it is important to underscore the current negotiations of broader pacts that involve more than two countries and cover a great number of economic areas. The rise of plurilateral agreements with a wider scope is likely to produce greater economic effects while spreading the basic principles of foreign investment protection to most Asian economies. While the rise of plurilateral IIAs may alleviate the problems associated with the noodle bowl of IIAs, it may also intensify the problems by creating more common-member agreements. In this connection, three determinants are assessed to play a major role in Asian rule-making. First, there are three Asian plurilateral agreements, either recently concluded or currently under negotiation, that deal with investment matters and illustrate the regionalisation of investment law: ACIA, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and the PRC-Japan-Republic of Korea Trilateral Investment Treaty. Second, TPP results in one of the most ambitious investment treaties ever negotiated, which may have the potential to absorb all Asian investment treaties. Third, an exogenous parameter is the EU decision to expand into investment negotiations and replace the negotiating role of EU Member States. Virtually all Asian countries already bound with many of the 27 EU Member States will be affected.
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