French International Arbitration Review

The article provides an analysis of the existing tools available to investors in the Middle East, given the recent investment boom that is still taking place in the area.

Authors: Peter Rosher

Type: Articles Published

As far as these ‘tools’ are concerned, there are a number of investment protection treaties, most of which are bilateral treaties. There are also regional agreements that offer specifically Islamic and Arabic solutions. Of note, and the main focus of the article, are the following regional agreements: the Agreement on Promotion, Protection and Guarantee of Investments amongst the Member States of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (the OIC Agreement) (I) and the Unified Agreement for the Investment of Arab Capital in the Arab States (the Unified Agreement) (II). Although dating from the 1980s, these tools continue to provide protection to investors in a region that is notorious for its periods of instability.

The article analyses both agreements, and the protection offered to investors within each, notably in light of a recent arbitral tribunal award in al-Warraq v. Indonesia, where the applicable investment treaty was the OIC Agreement. Through an analysis of the above-mentioned agreements, it can be said that the OIC Agreement and the Unified Agreement offer a series of procedural and substantive protections that may prove more beneficial than traditional bilateral investment treaties. However, investors need to be familiar with certain particularities of these instruments.