Asia Globe Resized

Numerous media outlets (here, here, and here) are reporting that the United States and 11 Asian countries are nearing a deal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty (TPP).

The TPP is a sweeping trade agreement that aims to lower barriers to goods and services and set commercial rules of the road amongst 11 Asian countries (Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam), representing two-fifths of the world’s economy. Representatives from the 12 countries originally arrived for a 2-day meeting, which has stretched into five. Nevertheless, it appears that the parties are close to reaching an agreement in principle before the end of the weekend. The Office of the United States Representatives has set up a “Ministerial Live Stream” from Atlanta, which will announce any agreement live.

The TPP includes a section on foreign direct investment, aiming to provide certain substantive legal protections for investors and investments of each TPP country in the other TPP countries, including provisions to ensure non-discrimination, a minimum standard of treatment, rules on expropriation, and prohibitions on specified performance requirements that distort trade and investment. The investment section will also set out an investor-State dispute settlement mechanism, subject, however, to certain limitations that protect the rights of TPP countries to issue regulations in the public interest, even though such regulation might adversely affect foreign investments.


About the Author:

Eric Z. Chang, firm founder and Principal, has extensive experience practicing both in civil law and common law systems. He is a former French Avocat à la cour and a current member of the New York and California Bars. He has practiced in Paris, New York and California on cross-border matters involving parties and disputes in Africa, Europe, the United States, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East. His experience covers a wide range of issues and industries: he has represented commercial clients in cases dealing with construction delays and disruptions, finance, securities and accounting fraud, shareholder disputes, maritime attachments, oil and energy, banking and telecommunications. He also represents clients on investor-state disputes, including bilateral investment treaty (BIT) arbitration.