Training program on Investment Treaty Arbitration

Jun 15: The Ministry of External Affairs, through the Arbitration Cell of the Ministry along with the Permanent Court of Arbitration, The Hague organised a three-day capacity-building workshop on Investment Treaty Arbitration from 13-15 June 2022 in a hybrid model.

The training programme was inaugurated by Supreme Court Judge, Dr Justice DY Chandrachud in the presence of noted jurist and Senior Advocate Fali S Nariman and the valedictory session was addressed by Minister of State for External Affairs Dr Rajkumar Ranjan Singh and Fali S Nariman.

The training programme saw the enthusiastic participation of over 200 officers from the Central Government and State Governments including participation by officers from the Indian Missions abroad.

At the inaugural session, Justice Chandrachud spoke about the need for capacity building in this niche area of law and also spoke about the inconsistency and other issues faced by the current ISDS system. He also spoke about the work of UNCITRAL Working Group-III on ISDS reforms and noted that some of the experts in the training programme and the MEA were active in the UNCITRAL Working Group deliberations. He also stressed the need to tap into the best talents. He also commended the progress in the implementation of the PCA-India Host Country Agreement.

Secretary (Economic Relations) Shri Dammu Ravi mentioned about the creation of the Arbitration Cell in the MEA, which would be used as a repository of knowledge on investment treaties and arbitration and build expertise in the field. He also noted the progress in implementation of the Host Country Agreement entered into between India and the PCA regarding hosting a hearing facility and offices of the PCA in Delhi.

The three-day training programme had experts from across the world who are leading lawyers in the field of investment treaty arbitration taking the participants to the various aspects pertaining to investment treaty arbitrations.

The training started by introducing the participants to the basics of investment treaties and giving them a global perspective followed by educating them on India’s involvement in investment treaty arbitrations. Over the course of three days, various aspects pertaining to investment treaty arbitrations such as jurisdictional issues, functions of the PCA, substantive protections, defences in investment treaty arbitration and the post arbitral part of the challenge to awards and enforcement of arbitral awards were covered.

MoS Dr Rajkumar Ranjan Singh during his valedictory address congratulated Mr Marcin Czepelak the new Secretary-General of the PCA. He mentioned how institutions like the PCA played a pivotal role in ensuring that peace among nations is maintained, through a civilised and principled settlement of disputes. He also said that he hopes this training programme would be extremely productive and useful not only for the participants but for the Government of India at large and that the participants would go back, ponder over and deliberate how they can make the best use of the knowledge acquired from experts to further the national interest

Md. Noor Rahman Sheikh, Joint Secretary (Economic Diplomacy) in the Ministry of External Affairs summed up the proceedings of the training programme and thanked the PCA for their efforts in coordinating and helping in organising the intellectually stimulated and well-received workshop.

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