This article problematises the proposal to include rules relating to investment facilitation for development at the multilateral level. Embedding rules on investment facilitation will bring a dimension of foreign direct investment (FDI) explicitly within the scope of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) with a view to fostering “development” and enabling countries to diversify their export capacity, integrate into global value chains, and link up the digital economy. The proposal for a multilateral agreement on investment facilitation for development raises normative questions about the evolutive nature of international investment law and its interconnections with other sub-systems of international law, including trade and human rights. Through a rights lens, this article challenges the normative assumption that foreign direct investment (FDI) will necessarily have positive implications for development and questions the role of the WTO in relation to investment. It will be argued that the multilateral rules have internalised the logic of market fundamentalism and the efficiency-oriented rationality of the system is blind to the relationship between trade, justice, and rights. Finally, this article calls for a more participative model of deliberation at the multilateral level to ensure that existing and new rules are sensitive to the objectives of the Sustainable Development Goals.
|Journal||Indian Journal of International Economic Law|
|Publication status||Published - 18 Feb 2019|
- LAW Centre for Global Law and Innovation