Arbitraje de inversión en el sector energético

AutorMaría Eugenia Bagnulo Cedrez
CargoAbogada por la Universidad de la República (Uruguay); Licenciada en Relaciones Internacionales por la Universidad de la República (Uruguay); LL.M. Energy and Natural Resources Law en Queen Mary University of London School of Law (Inglaterra)..
Páginas183-216
183
MaRía eUGenia BAGNULO CEDREZ*
Universidad de la República (UDELAR), Uruguay.
dra.bagnulo@gmail.com
ORCID iD: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6568-9513
Recibido: 15/09/2020 - Aceptado: 29/05/2021
Para citar este artículo / To reference this article / Para citar este artigo
Bagnullo Cedrez, M. A. (2021). Investment arbitration in the energy sector. Revista
de Derecho, 20(39) 183-2 16.
https://doi.org/10.47274/DERUM/39.8
Investment arbitration in the energy sector
In what circumstances is an investor entitled to compensation under the Fair
and Equitable Treatment standard of protection in the Energy Charter Treaty
as a result of the exercise by the states of the right to regulate to detriment of
investors? A special analysis on photovoltaic arbitration cases in Italy, Spain and
the Czech Republic.
Abstract: A signicant development in the renewable energy eld has happened in several countries like
Italy, Spain and the Chez Republic over the last years mainly due to the state´s support for renewable
energy projects. However, because of the nancial crisis, these countries decided to review and change
the policies. As a result of the changes implemented renewable investors were affected in some manner.
Consequently, many arbitrations claim against these states have been brought under the Energy Charter
Treaty. The present Chapter analyses this jurisprudence. Based on the results of these arbitrations the lack
of consistency results evident. Different interpretations around the Fair and Equitable Treatment standard
and how to nd a balance between the need for a stable and predictable investment framework and the
sovereign right to regulate are the principal cause of diverse decisions. The concept of the standard in
the treaty is reviewed and compared with the evolution of the concept in other investment agreements.
In conclusion, possible amendments to increase consistency in the arbitrations under the Energy Charter
Treaty will be proposed.
Key words: Fair and Equitable Treatment, Legitimate Expectations, Investment Arbitration, Energy Charter
Treaty, Regulatory Changes.
* Abogada por la Universidad de la República (Uruguay); Licenciada en Relaciones Internacionales por la Universidad de la
República (Uruguay); LL.M. Energy and Natural Resources Law en Queen Mary University of London School of Law (Inglaterra)..
MARÍA EUGENIA BAGNULO CEDREZ - ARBITRAJE DE INVERSIÓN EN EL SECTOR ENERGÉTICO
- doi: https://doi.org/10.47274/DERUM/39.8
Revista de Derecho. Año XX (Julio 2021), Nº 39, pp. 183-216 | ISSN: 1510-5172 (papel) - 2301-1610 (en línea)
184
Arbitraje de inversión en el sector energético
¿En qué circunstancias un Inversor tiene derecho a recibir una compensación en
el marco de la provisión de Tratamiento Justo y Equitativo del Tratado de la Carta
de Energía como consecuencia del ejercicio del Estado de su derecho regulatorio
en detrimento de los inversores? Análisis de casos de arbitraje de inversiones en
el sector fotovoltaico en Italia, España y República Checa.
Resumen: U n d esa rro llo imp ort ant e de las ene rgí as r eno vab les ha o cur rid o en paí ses co mo I tal ia, Esp aña y
República de Checa en los últimos años, principalmente debido al apoyo del estado a proyectos de energía
renovable. Sin embargo, debido a la crisis nanciera, estos países decidieron revisar su marco regulatorio.
Como resultado de los cambios implementados, los inversores en el sector renovable se vieron afectados.
En consecuencia, demandas de arbitraje de inversiones contra estos estados se han presentado al amparo del
Tratado de la Carta de la Energía. El presente Capítulo analiza esta jurisprudencia. En base a los resultados
de los arbitrajes se evidencia la falta consistencia en los laudos arbitrales. Las diferentes interpretaciones
en torno al estándar de Tratamiento Justo y Equitativo y a cómo equilibrar la necesidad (para el inversor)
de un marco de inversión estable y predecible y el derecho soberano (del Estado) a regular, son la causa
principal de las diversas soluciones. El concepto del Estándar de Tratamiento Justo y Equitativo en el Tratado
se revisa y se compara con la evolución del concepto en otros tratados de inversión. En conclusión, se
propondrán posibles enmiendas para aumentar la certeza en los arbitrajes de inversiones presentados al
amparo del Tratado de la Carta de la Energía.
Palabras clave: Tratamiento Justo y Equitativo, Expectativas Legítimas, Arbitraje de Inversiones, Tratado
sobre la Carta de Energía, Cambios Regulatorios.
Arbitragem de investimento no setor energético
Em que circunstâncias um investidor tem o direito de ser compensado no âmbito
do tratamento justo e equitativo previsto no Tratado da Carta de Energia, em
consequência do exercício do Estado do seu direito regulamentar em detrimento dos
investidores? Análise de casos de arbitragem de investidores no setor fotovoltaico
em Itália, Espanha e República Checa.
Resumo: Ocorreu um desenvolvimento importante das energias renováveis em países como a Itália,
Espanha e República Checa, principalmente devido ao apoio do Estado a projetos de energias renováveis.
No entanto, devido à crise nanceira, estes países decidiram rever o seu marco regulatório. Em
resultado das alterações introduzidas, os investidores no setor das energias renováveis foram afetados.
Consequentemente, foram apresentados pedidos de arbitragem de investimentos contra estes Estados
com o amparo do Tratado da Carta da Energia. O presente capítulo analisa esta jurisprudência. Com base
nos resultados das arbitragens, verica-se a falta de consistência nas sentenças arbitrais. As diferentes
interpretações entorno do tratamento justo e equitativo e a forma de equilibrar a necessidade (para o
investidor) de um quadro de investimento estável e previsível e o direito soberano (do Estado) de regular,
são a principal causa das diversas soluções. O conceito de padrão de tratamento justo e equitativo no
tratado é revisto e comparado com a evolução do conceito em outros tratados de investimento. Em
conclusão, serão propostas possíveis alterações para aumentar a certeza nas arbitragens de investimentos
apresentadas com o amparo do Tratado da Carta da Energia.
Palavras- chave: Tratamento Justo e Equitativo, Expectativas Legítimas, Arbitragem de Investimentos,
Tratado sobre a Carta de Energia, Mudanças Regulatórias.
MARÍA EUGENIA BAGNULO CEDREZ - ARBITRAJE DE INVERSIÓN EN EL SECTOR ENERGÉTICO
Revista de Derecho. Año XX (Julio 2021), Nº 39, pp. 183-216 | ISSN: 1510-5172 (papel) - 2301-1610 (en línea)
185
1. Introduction and background
Investment in electricity generation from renewable energy sources is rarely considered
to be financially viable without state support (Selivanova, 2018, p.433). The principal aim
of which is to cover projects high investment costs and encourage sustainable generation.
Furthermore, the energy sector is characterized by the existence of long-term contracts
(Mistelis, 2018, p.153). The reason for this is that energy projects involve large sums of
capital investment and the use of technology that generally has a long useful life (Scherer,
2018, p.14). The application by a state of significant changes to these schemes or to the
legal framework which governs a renewable energy investment –after a project has been
constructed– may affect the investor’s expectations to receive a reasonable return on their
investment and to recover costs (Selivanova, 2018, p.433).
Investors often seek guarantees that the legal framework in which an investment is
made will remain stable during the entire term of the contract. However, from the state’s
perspective, it is a challenge to grant the freezing of the legal regime which governs the
sector during such a long period of time. The existence of conflicting interests between
both parties –investors and states– is, therefore, a fact. This, in some cases, gives rise
to disputes. That occurred during the financial crisis due to the over-subsidisation
phenomenon. Consequently, several states reversed some of the benefits initially
conceded to photovoltaic investors through schemes (Gallagher, 2018, p.250). Investors
in photovoltaic energy decided to invest considering a legal framework which was
subsequently changed in some way. When the changes that occurred in the regulation
did not have an impact on the terms of the business conducted by the investors, the
consequence is irrelevant. However, when the changes affect the economic equation of
the business, investment arbitration appears as the main tool for the investors (Charles
A., 2019, “Investment Disputes Involving the Renewable Energy Industry under the
Energy Charter Treaty”, Global Arbitration Review).
The state’s right to regulate and modify the existing legal framework –once the
investment was made– is not under debate. It constitutes an exercise of the principle of
state sovereignty, according to which it has right to regulate in its domestic jurisdiction
(Charanne v. Spain, SCC Case No. V 062/2012, Final Award, 2016, para. 449-503; Charanne
v. Spain, SCC Case No. V 062/2012, Partial Dissenting Opinion, 2015, para. 11; Eiser. v.
Spain, ICSID Case No. ARB/13/36 (2017) Final Award, para.362; Blusun v Italy Final
Award, 2016, para. 317,367 y 372; Antaris v Czech Republic, PCA Case No. 2014-01 Final
Award, 2018, para. 360 y Antaris v Czech Republic, PCA Case No. 2014-01, Dissenting
Opinion of Gary Born, 2018, para. 39).
However, certain limits should be imposed on the state’s right to regulate domestic
matters if such regulations adversely affect the foreign investor’s –previously
made– investments (Selivanova, 2018, p.433). It has been argued that undertakings
or representations that a state has made to attract renewable investments might –in
specific situations- create ´legitimate expectations´ for the investors (Graham, 2018,
p.221). Although certain tendency seems to be appearing in case-law, there is still not
a jurisprudence constante regarding this matter. The breach by states of the legitimate
expectations of the investors is being considered by some arbitral tribunals (for instance:
Eiser v. Spain, ICSID Case No. ARB/13/36, 2017; Infrastructure v. Spain, ICSID Case No.
MARÍA EUGENIA BAGNULO CEDREZ - ARBITRAJE DE INVERSIÓN EN EL SECTOR ENERGÉTICO
Revista de Derecho. Año XX (Julio 2021), Nº 39, pp. 183-216 | ISSN: 1510-5172 (papel) - 2301-1610 (en línea)

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