The latest edition of ICSID’s biannual caseload statistics reports on case-related trends in the 2023 fiscal year, as well as for all ICSID cases going back to 1972.

This issue of the caseload statistics introduces a new format that makes it easier to compare annual and historical data on ICSID cases.

ICSID registered 45 cases in FY2023 (July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023) under its procedural rules for resolving international investment disputes. Arbitrations under the ICSID ConventionCover accounted for the largest share of new cases (40 cases), followed by arbitrations applying the ICSID Additional Facility Rules (five cases).

As of June 30, 2023, ICSID had registered a total of 933 cases under the ICSID Convention and Additional Facility Rules.

An additional 22 cases were administered under other procedural rules—marking a new record. Most (16 cases) applied the arbitration rules of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL).

Basis of Consent

The majority of newly registered cases in FY2023 (37%) asserted ICSID jurisdiction on the basis of a bilateral investment treaty (BIT). This is a smaller share than the trend in previous years—overall, 59% of ICSID cases have invoked BITs.

A variety of multilateral agreements also accounted for a significant share of new cases, most notably the Energy Charter Treaty (13% of cases), the North American Free Trade Agreement (12% of cases), and the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (12% of cases). Parties also instituted proceedings relying on the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (4% of cases), the ASEAN-China Investment Agreement (2% of cases), the Canada-Peru Free Trade Agreement (2% of cases), and for the first time, the Mexico, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua FTA (2% cases).

A further 10% of cases were brought on the basis of contracts between a host State and investor, and 6% on domestic investment laws.

Regional Distribution

The ICSID caseload reflects considerable regional diversity. In FY2023, States in Central America and the Caribbean accounted for 22% of new cases, followed by Eastern Europe and Central Asia with 18%. States in North America and South America each accounted for 13% of new cases. The remaining cases comprised States in Western Europe (11%), the Middle East and North Africa (9%), Sub-Saharan Africa (9%) and the South and East Asia/Pacific (5%).

Economic Sectors

A full range of economic sectors are involved in ICSID cases. As in previous years, the extractives and energy sectors accounted for the largest share of cases in FY2023. Twenty-seven percent of new cases involved the oil, gas, and mining industry and 15% related to electric power and other energy sources.

The finance sector was also prominent, accounting for 11% of cases. Construction and transportation each made up 9%, while information and communication, and agriculture, fishing, and forestry each accounted for 7%. Other cases involved water, sanitation, and flood protection (4%); tourism (2%); and services and trade (2%).

A mix of other industries accounted for the remaining 7% of cases registered in FY2023.

Case Outcomes

The outcome of cases at ICSID has been consistently balanced between States and investors. Among cases decided by tribunals in FY2023, 59% of awards upheld the investors’ claims in part or in full, 24% of awards rejected all of the investors’ claims on the merits, and 14% of awards declined jurisdiction. Three percent of cases were dismissed for manifest lack of legal merit.

Gender Balance

Women accounted for 22% of all appointments to ICSID cases in FY2023, compared to 14% when accounting for all ICSID cases.

Amongst the appointments made by ICSID—as opposed to appointments by the parties or co-arbitrators—42% were women and 58% were men.

For further information, see The ICSID Caseload – Statistics (Issue 2023 – 2).

About The ICSID Caseload - Statistics

The ICSID Caseload - Statistics contains a profile of the ICSID caseload since the first case was registered in 1972. ICSID has hosted the majority of all known international investment cases and The ICSID Caseload - Statistics is a valuable empirical reference about trends in international investment dispute settlement generally. It 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. The ICSID Caseload - Statistics is available in English, French and Spanish, and updated every 6 months.