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Time to Quit? Assessing International Investment Claims Against Plain Tobacco Packaging in Australia

Journal of International Economic Law, Vol. 14, No. 3, 2011

U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 560

36 Pages Posted: 11 Aug 2011 Last revised: 25 Oct 2011

Tania S.L. Voon

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Law School

Andrew D. Mitchell

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Law School

Date Written: August 11, 2011

Abstract

The Australian federal government recently introduced into Parliament legislation mandating the plain packaging of all tobacco products. Tobacco companies and others have raised various legal concerns with this tobacco control scheme, both at a domestic level in relation to constitutional and intellectual property law, and at an international level in relation to international economic law. Some Members of the World Trade Organization (‘WTO’) have asked questions about the scheme in the WTO Committee on Technical Barriers to Trade and the Council for Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights. In addition, Philip Morris (Asia) Limited has given notice of an investor-State dispute settlement claim against Australia regarding plain packaging pursuant to the Hong Kong – Australia Bilateral Investment Treaty. This article considers the merits of that claim as well as certain related procedural issues. It also compares Australia’s investment obligations with respect to plain packaging under the Australia – United States Free Trade Agreement, as some allegations have been made that plain packaging is inconsistent with those obligations.

Keywords: Investment, international law, tobacco, cigarettes, bilateral investment treaty, international dispute settlement

JEL Classification: K33, F21, L66

Suggested Citation

Voon, Tania S.L. and Mitchell, Andrew D., Time to Quit? Assessing International Investment Claims Against Plain Tobacco Packaging in Australia (August 11, 2011). Journal of International Economic Law, Vol. 14, No. 3, 2011; U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 560. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1906560

Tania Voon (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Law School ( email )

University of Melbourne
Victoria 3010
Australia

Andrew D. Mitchell

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Law School ( email )

The University of Melbourne
Victoria, 3010
Australia
+61383441098 (Phone)
+61393472392 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.unimelb.edu.au/staff/Andrew%20Mitchell

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