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  • ICSID and Xi’an Jiaotong University Co-host 50th Anniversary Conference in Xi’an, China
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ICSID and Xi’an Jiaotong University co-hosted a conference celebrating ICSID’s 50th Anniversary entitled “ICSID at 50: The Evolution of International Investment Treaties and Dispute Resolution”.  The conference was held in Xi’an, People’s Republic of China on November 26, 2015 and brought together counsel, arbitrators, academics, government officials and private sector participants from around the world. 

The conference was opened with remarks by officials from Shaanxi Province, the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China, the Supreme Court of the People’s Republic of China and ICSID.


  Prof. Wenhua Shan, Xi’an Jiaotong University School of Law (MC); Mr. Dong An, the Deputy Director of the Standing Committee of Shaanxi Provincial People’s Congress and Former President of the High People’s Court of Shaanxi Province; Mr. Maizeng Zhang, the Secretary of the CPC Committee of Xi’an Jiaotong University and Deputy Director of the Standing Committee of Shaanxi Provincial People’s Congress; Ms. Meg Kinnear, the Secretary-General of ICSID; Ms. Yongjie Li, the Deputy Director-General of MOFCOM and Ms. Hongyu Shen, Judge at the Supreme People’s Court of the People’s Republic of China.   


The program consisted of five sessions featuring distinguished experts in international investment law discussing contemporary issues and the Asia Pacific regional perspective. Each of these sessions can be viewed below.


Session 1:  Evolution of International Investment Treaty Law


 Prof. Wenhua Shan and Ms. Geraldine R. Fischer moderated the first session, which provided a foundation for the day’s dialogues.  During this session, Dr. Stanimir Alexandrov,Prof. Gabriel BottiniMr. Nils EliassonProf. Dr. August ReinischDr. Mavluda Sattorova, and Prof. Albert Jan van den Berg described how ICSID tribunals have interpreted critical international investment law notions, such as the definition of investment, corporate nationality, expropriation, fair and equitable treatment, the most-favored-nation clause and exceptions.


Prof. Wenhua Shan, Xi’an Jiaotong University School of Law (moderator); Ms. Geraldine R. Fischer, ICSID (moderator); Dr. Stanimir Alexandrov, Sidley Austin LLP (speaker); Mr. Nils Eliasson, Shearman & Sterling LLP (speaker) ;and Prof. Dr. August Reinisch, University of Vienna (speaker).  


Dr. Mavluda Sattorova, University of Liverpool (speaker); Prof. Gabriel Bottini, University of Buenos Aires (speaker); and Prof. Albert Jan van den Berg, Hanotiau & van den Berg (speaker).  


Session 2:  International Investment Treaties and Asia Pacific Perspectives

Mr. Jingzhou Tao and Dr. Xiaochun Liu facilitated the second session discussions amongst the regional experts. In this session, the panelists, Ms. Yongjie LiProfessor Tomoko IshikawaProf. Jean Ho, Prof. Leon Trakman and Professor Hi-Taek Shin, provided an overview of the Chinese, Japanese, Singaporean, Australian and Korean perspectives on bilateral and regional investment treaties.


Mr. Jingzhou Tao, Dechert LLP (moderator); Ms. Yongjie Li, Deputy Director General, Ministry of Commerce People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM) (speaker); Prof. Jean Ho, National University of Singapore (speaker); and Dr. Xiaochun Liu, President, Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration (SCIA) (moderator).


Professor Hi-Taek Shin, Seoul National University School of Law (speaker); Professor Tomoko Ishikawa, University of Tsukuba, Japan (speaker); and Prof. Leon Trakman, University of Sydney (speaker).


Session 3: The Role of State-Owned Enterprises in Investment Arbitration

The third session on State-owned enterprises (SOEs) in investment arbitration was moderated by Ms. Teresa Cheng and Ms. Lu Wang. The panelists, Prof. Mark FeldmanMs. Daphne Hong and Mr. Mark Mangan, highlighted how arbitral awards have dealt with SOEs acting as a claimant/investor in investor-State disputes and when SOE conduct can be attributed to the State.  The panelists also discussed how SOEs have been dealt with in recent treaty practice.


Prof. Mark Feldman, Peking University School of Transnational Law (speaker); Ms. Teresa Cheng, G.B.S., SC, J.P., Des Voeux Chambers (moderator); Ms. Lu Wang, University of Liverpool and Xi’an Jiaotong University (moderator); Ms. Daphne Hong, Attorney-General’s Chambers, Singapore (speaker); and Mr. Mark Mangan, Dechert LLP (speaker).


Session 4: Procedural Innovations

The fourth session, moderated by Ms. Meg Kinnear and Mr. Hu Li, considered procedural innovations in investor-State arbitration. The panel, consisting of Dr. Alejandro CarballoMs. Mélida HodgsonProf. Joongi KimMr. Toby Landau, QC and Mr. Yu-Jin Tay, advanced views on transparency, techniques to expedite cases, the role of amicus curiae and the State in treaty interpretation, the use of mediation in ISDS disputes and security for costs and cost awards.


Mr. Yu-Jin Tay, DLA Piper (speaker); Mr. Hu Li, Deputy Secretary-General, China International Economic and Trade Commission (CIETAC) (moderator); Alejandro Carballo, Energy Charter Secretariat (speaker); Ms. Mélida Hodgson, Foley Hoag LLP (speaker); Prof. Joongi Kim, Yonsei Law School, Seoul, Korea (speaker); and Mr. Toby Landau, QC, Essex Court  Chambers (speaker).


Prof. Joongi Kim, Yonsei Law School, Seoul, Korea (speaker); Ms. Meg Kinnear, Secretary-General, ICSID (moderator); and Mr. Toby Landau, QC, Essex Court  Chambers (speaker).


Session 5: ISDS Reform upon the Decrees of Heaven?

The final session of the day, moderated by Ms. Meg Kinnear, Secretary-General, ICSID, brought together Prof. Marc BungenbergDr. Tai-Heng ChengMs. Anna Joubin-BretProf. Catherine Rogers and Dr. Leon Trakman to explore suggested reforms to the investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) system.  The speakers addressed the potential for a standing investment tribunal or an appellate body; the use of alternate dispute resolution in the international investment context; conflicts of interest and arbitrator challenges and the effect of new participants, such as regional economic integration organizations, on ISDS.


Dr. Tai-Heng Cheng, Quinn, Emmanuel, Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP (speaker); Ms. Anna Joubin-Bret, Cabinet d’Avocats (speaker); Prof. Catherine Rogers, Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson School of Law (speaker); Ms. Geraldine R. Fischer, ICSID, Prof. Leon Trakman, University of Sydney (speaker); and Ms. Meg Kinnear, Secretary-General, ICSID (Moderator). 


Prof. Marc Bungenberg, Saarland University (Speaker) and Prof. Dr. August Reinisch, University of Vienna.


ICSID News Release December 23, 2015