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February 13, 2015

20th February 2015
5pm GMT / 12pm EST

Ian Laird, Editor in Chief, Investment Claims

Dr. Aloysius Llamzon, King & Spalding
Brody Greenwald, White & Case
Teddy Baldwin, Baker & Kenzie
Professor Amy Westbrook, Washburn Law School


  • Host states frequently invoke corruption as a defense to investment treaty claims
  • Tribunals frequently do not appear to resolve these allegations to the satisfaction of either party

Does the treatment of corruption in investor-state arbitration threaten the integrity of the investor-state arbitration paradigm?
Investor-state tribunals in most cases are tasked with the interpretation of investment treaties (e.g., BITs). Host states frequently raise as a defense to BIT proceedings that the investor was corrupt and as such is not entitled to pursue a treaty claim. Problematically, many BITs do not address directly how tribunals should address assertions by the host state that the investor procured an investment through corruption or acted in a corrupt manner during the life of the investment. There is body of evidence that tribunals imply a corruption defense into BITs either as a matter of public policy or through construction of BIT requirements that the investor have made its investment in accordance with host state law. The challenge of current practice is that tribunals appear to do too much or too little. Thus, some critics submit that corruption allegations are host state cure alls to which tribunals give too much deference without thorough engagement of record evidence. Other critics argue that tribunals apply a far too narrow definition of corruption in their jurisprudence and thus derogate from important international instruments drawn up as part of global anti-corruption efforts.

The webinar will take the form of two rounds of debate on the topic. A live Q&A will close the event. Sign up today!