One of the more remarkable economic trends in recent decades has been the expansion of international investment. This benefits countries by providing access to external financing, technology and expertise. But it also means that there are more opportunities
for tensions to arise amongst investors and States.
The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) provides an independent forum to conciliate and arbitrate these disputes. ICSID was established under the Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States (the ICSID Convention)—a treaty that entered force in 1966, and which today has been signed and ratified by 158 States.
Today, ICSID is as relevant as ever—with a membership and caseload that is larger than at any other point in its history.
This short primer provides an introduction to ICSID, covering its origins and purpose.