Chinese Puzzle: Anatomy of the (Invisible) Belt and Road Investment Treaty

Journal of International Economic Law, Volume 23, Issue 1, March 2020, Pages 245–269, https://doi.org/10.1093/jiel/jgz047

25 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2023 Last revised: 13 Feb 2023

See all articles by Jamieson M. Kirkwood

Jamieson M. Kirkwood

National University of Singapore Faculty of Law

Julien Chaisse

City University of Hong Kong (CityU) - Centre for Chinese & Comparative Law

Date Written: February 13, 2020

Abstract

This article makes a major contribution to the emerging Belt and Road Initiative scholarship (and international economic law) by highlighting that (i)China’s existing investment treaty network along the Belt and Road is dated, (ii) many or most of those treaties include Most Favored Nation provisions, (iii) these treaties have hitherto been subject to a static three generations analysis which does not reflect the reality, and (iv) there is significant authority supporting the use of the Most Favoured Nation provisions by Chinese investors to upgrade the Belt and Road Initiative investment treaty network. This article demonstrates that an investment treaty for the Belt and Road Initiative already exists via the Most Favored Nation clause present in China’s bilateral investment treaties. Moreover, the article further identifies that China’s treaty network is unique (by being so extensive) and assesses the potential for investment claims in light of Belt and Road Initiative jurisdictions past involvements in Investor–State Dispute Settlement, and by doing so, the article sheds a new light on the predicted increased use of such procedure by Chinese investors.

Keywords: Belt and Road Initiative, Bilateral Investment Treaties, Most Favored Nation, Multilateral Treaty, Investor State Dispute Settlement

Suggested Citation

Kirkwood, Jamieson and Chaisse, Julien, Chinese Puzzle: Anatomy of the (Invisible) Belt and Road Investment Treaty (February 13, 2020). Journal of International Economic Law, Volume 23, Issue 1, March 2020, Pages 245–269, https://doi.org/10.1093/jiel/jgz047, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4344516

Jamieson Kirkwood

National University of Singapore Faculty of Law ( email )

469G Bukit Timah Road
Singapore, 259776
Singapore

Julien Chaisse (Contact Author)

City University of Hong Kong (CityU) - Centre for Chinese & Comparative Law ( email )

83 Tat Chee Avenue
Room P5300, 5th Floor, Academic 1
Kowloon Tong
Hong Kong
(852) 3442 8008 (Phone)
(852) 3442 0190 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.cityu.edu.hk/slw/people/people_chaisse_julien.html

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