Energy Charter: A multilateral process for managing commercial energy relations

05-07-2017

The Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) was originally conceived as a multilateral framework to facilitate commercial energy relations across the Eurasian continent. In order to secure sufficient investor protection, the ECT provides for the possibility of legal dispute settlement mechanisms. The outcome of such proceedings have been broadly balanced, although some states now perceive them as contrary to their national interest. The withdrawal of Russia from the ECT in 2009 was a major blow to the process, prompting a strategic shift and a focus on newer priorities. Member countries (including the EU and 27 of its Member States) together with the Energy Charter Secretariat have sought to adopt a more global outlook for the Energy Charter. This has already had a notable success in the form of the 2015 International Energy Charter, signed by 80 countries, which is the lynchpin of a broader process of global outreach and international engagement.

The Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) was originally conceived as a multilateral framework to facilitate commercial energy relations across the Eurasian continent. In order to secure sufficient investor protection, the ECT provides for the possibility of legal dispute settlement mechanisms. The outcome of such proceedings have been broadly balanced, although some states now perceive them as contrary to their national interest. The withdrawal of Russia from the ECT in 2009 was a major blow to the process, prompting a strategic shift and a focus on newer priorities. Member countries (including the EU and 27 of its Member States) together with the Energy Charter Secretariat have sought to adopt a more global outlook for the Energy Charter. This has already had a notable success in the form of the 2015 International Energy Charter, signed by 80 countries, which is the lynchpin of a broader process of global outreach and international engagement.