Trade Agreements: Dispute Resolution

Department for International Trade written question – answered on 8th July 2020.

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Photo of Sarah Olney Sarah Olney Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (International Trade), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if she will make it her policy not to include investor state dispute settlements in future trade agreements; and will she make a statement

Photo of Ranil Jayawardena Ranil Jayawardena Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for International Trade)

The United Kingdom has already negotiated investment agreements with Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions with over 90 trading partners. The precise details of any future Free Trade Agreement are a matter for formal negotiations, and we would not seek to pre-empt these discussions.

HM Government recognises the important role that investment protections with ISDS can play in protecting British investors abroad – including pensioners across the country through their pension funds, and SMEs. Where ISDS is included in future agreements, we will seek to ensure fair outcomes of claims and high ethical standards for arbitrators, with increased transparency and efficiency of proceedings.

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