Edited by Kate Miles
Chapter 19: Natural resources and indigenous cultural heritage in international investment law and arbitration
While traditionally international investment law had developed only limited tools for the protection of indigenous cultural heritage through dispute settlement, incidences of cases in which arbitrators have balanced the different values at stake are increasing. After briefly examining the international norms protecting indigenous cultural heritage and the international investment law regime, this chapter analyses and critically assesses a selected sample of relevant arbitrations. It then offers some legal options to better reconcile the different interests at stake. It is argued that UNDRIP contributes significantly to current discourse on indigenous heritage. However, this does not mean that further steps need not be taken. On the contrary, the collision between international investment law and indigenous entitlements makes the case for strengthening the current regime protecting indigenous heritage. In particular, the participation of indigenous peoples in the decisions which affect them and their heritage is crucial.
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