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Middle Eastern Investors as Claimants in Investment Treaty Arbitrations

Anne K. Hoffmann

ABSTRACT

Investment arbitration is not unknown in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). An increasingly broad network of bilateral investment treaties (BITs) covers this region, allowing investors to avail themselves of the standards of protection the BITs offer. Middle Eastern states do not share the weariness with BITs and investor-state arbitration that is found in other parts of the world, and continue to conclude new investment treaties. These treaties have been used for more than a decade by Middle Eastern investors to commence investment arbitrations. Initially, the respondent states were often also from this region. However, as investments expand, states in other parts of the world are now also facing claims by investors from the MENA region. The jurisprudence emerging from these cases touches on several interesting legal issues, such as dual nationals as investors and claims for moral damages. The continuing expansion of the BIT network across the region and a growing awareness among investors of the opportunities it offers will likely result in more claims being brought in the future.