Demand for ICSID's dispute resolution services continued to grow in 2018 with a record 56 new registered cases, according to the latest edition of the bi-annual ICSID Caseload—Statistics.
The 2018 figure surpasses the previous year's record of 53 registered cases. Overall, ICSID has administered 706 cases since the first was registered in 1972.
As in past years, the majority of new cases were instituted under the ICSID Convention Arbitration Rules (49 cases), followed by the Additional Facility Rules (six cases) and the ICSID Convention Conciliation Rules (one case).
Notably, ICSID has also seen growth in the number of cases administered under other sets of rules, such as those of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL). In total, ICSID provided services for 20 cases governed by non-ICSID rules in 2018, compared to 13 the previous year. Fifteen of these cases applied the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules.
The largest share of cases registered in 2018 involved States from Eastern Europe and Central Asia (32%), followed by South America (23%); the Middle East and North Africa (16%); Sub-Saharan Africa (11%); Western Europe (9%); South and East Asia, and the Pacific (5%); and Central America and the Caribbean (4%).
Geographic Distribution of New Cases Registered in 2018 under the ICSID Convention and Additional Facility Rules, by State Party Involved
As has been true historically, new cases also involved a broad range of economic sectors. Disputes in the oil, gas and mining sector accounted for 21% of cases registered in 2018, followed by electric power and other energy sources at 20% and construction at 14%. New cases also involved finance (13%); agriculture, fishing and forestry (5%); information and communication (5%); transportation (5%); services and trade (4%); tourism (2%); and water, sanitation and flood protection (2%). A mix of other industries accounted for the remaining 9% of cases registered in 2018.
Distribution of New Cases Registered in 2018 under the ICSID Convention and Additional Facility Rules, by Economic Sector
States consent to ICSID jurisdiction in a variety of treaties, contracts and domestic laws. For those cases registered in 2018, bilateral investment treaties were the primary instrument invoked (57%), followed by investment contracts between the investor and the host-State (17%), and the Energy Charter Treaty (10%). Other international treaties accounted for the remaining 16%.
Basis of Consent Invoked to Establish ICSID Jurisdiction in New Cases Registered in 2018 under the ICSID Convention and Additional Facility Rules
Despite common misperceptions, outcomes in ICSID cases are balanced amongst States and investors—and this remained true in 2018. Half of the thirty-six cases that were concluded in 2018 were settled or otherwise discontinued. Of the remaining 18 cases, the tribunal partly or fully upheld claims in 50% of cases, dismissed all claims in 33% of cases, and declined jurisdiction in 17% of cases.
Arbitration Proceedings under the ICSID Convention and Additional Facility Rules concluded in 2018 – Outcomes
Parties to ICSID cases are turning to an increasingly diverse set of arbitrators, conciliators and ad-hoc committee members. In 2018, 231 appointments were made from all geographic regions.
About The ICSID Caseload—Statistics
The ICSID Caseload - Statistics contains a profile of the ICSID caseload since the first case was registered in 1972. Each edition profiles various aspects of international investment cases, including the number of cases, the basis of consent invoked by claimants, geographic and economic sector distribution of cases, outcomes of proceedings, and the nationality of arbitrators and conciliators. It is available in English, French and Spanish, and updated every 6 months.