The Termination of Bilateral Investment Treaties in the EU – One Agreement to End Them All?

My colleagues Nick Storrs and Michael Wietzorek look at the EU memberstates’ exit from bi-lateral investment treaties (BITs) in the wake of the Achmea decision of the European Court of Justice. This case had several appearances on this blog, as it made its way from the Frankfurt Court of Appeals (Oberlandesgericht) and the Federal Supreme Court (Bundesgerichtshof) to the European Court of Justice, first under its original name, Slovakia v. Eureko. 

On 5 May 2020, 23 Member States of the EU entered into an Agreement for the Termination of Bilateral Investment Treaties between the Member States of the European Union (the Agreement). The Agreement will terminate any bilateral investment treaties (BITs) in force between any of Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain, as well as Belgium and Luxembourg, who had entered into BITs together as the Belgo-Luxembourg Economic Union.

Continue reading

Corona and the German Courts – A Tale in Three Acts

SARS-CoV-2_49534865371Like every other area of public life, the Corona crisis has hit the German courts with full force and did not leave it unscathed. But the reactions vary: They range from judges and courts still holding ordinary sessions and carrying on with oral hearings to courts being virtually closed except for on-call judges for very urgent matters, with standard civil and commercial matters being postponed ex offico. Three aspects of the current situation are of particular interest: Continue reading

US Ratification of Hague Choice of Court Convention: Bad News from Across the Pond

HCCH PictureWe have regularly covered the Hague Convention of Choice of Court Agreements on this blog. From a German, and indeed from a European perspective, a major breakthrough in terms of practical relevance of the Convention would be the ratification of the convention by the United States, given that there currently is no treaty in place between Germany and its biggest non-European trading partner that deals with recognition of judgments. Ted Folkman on his blog lettersblogatory.com is probably the best source for coverage of the Convention’s road towards ratification in the United States. This is what Ted has to Report: Continue reading

Singapore to Ratify Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements

Coat_of_arms_of_Singapore_(blazon)_svgWe have covered the Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements on several occasions (see, most recently, here and here). Now, the Convention is about to get a new party, and Patrick Dahm, a partner in my firm’s Singapore office, has the details:

On April 14, 2016, the Singapore Parliament has passed the Choice of Court Agreements Bill, about a year after Singapore signed the Convention on March 2015. The Bill is pending presidential assent and publication in the Government Gazette, which will bring it into force.

With this, the number of Convention parties will increase to three nominally, but effectively to 28: prior to Singapore, the Convention had been signed and ratified by Mexico and the European Union (spanning the EU itself and its members except Denmark). Signatories which have yet to ratify the Convention are the USA and Ukraine. Continue reading