Poulsen, Bonnitcha & Yackee: Analytical Framework for Assessing Costs and Benefits of Investment Protection Treaties

An excellent analysis on how countries should evaluate investment treaties.  From the INTRODUCTION:

The Lisbon Treaty has important implications for the external investment policy of European Union (EU) Member States. Competence for foreign direct investment policy has been transferred to the European Commission and a legislative framework is now in place to pursue EU wide investment treaties with third states. This raises both opportunities and challenges for the United Kingdom (UK). While the UK may continue to negotiate bilateral investment treaties (BITs), it also has to consider proposals for a new generation of European investment treaties. To provide a reasoned basis for choosing between alternative policy options, this report offers specific suggestions for how the UK government can assess the implications of a particular investment treaty. Although we caution against using ‘off-the-shelf’ quantitative indicators to guide policy-making in this area, an appendix to this report identifies potentially useful sources of information to assess whether a treaty may, or may not, provide net benefits.

The magnitude of the costs and benefits of any particular investment treaty will depend on its scope of coverage, generosity of substantive rights, and dispute settlement design. The analytical framework outlined below does not attempt to individually address every issue that would arise in the drafting of each specific provision of an investment treaty. Instead, the framework outlines a set of generic questions of relevance to any investment treaty (almost) irrespective of its specific design. Applying the framework to a particular treaty will require the generic questions outlined in the framework to be answered in light of the specifics of the treaty under consideration.


Available for download here.