17 October 2018 by

Introduction: Investment Protection in Africa

Over the next few weeks, CDH will release several  inserts on international investment protection from a South African and African perspective. The catalyst for these inserts stems from various seminars and workshops (led by CDH Director, Jackwell Feris) over the past few years on investment protection under international investment law for investments in various African jurisdictions.

In engaging with clients and other interested parties on these issues it appears that there is a general lack of knowledge transfer to African-based investors investing intra-Africa (including some foreign investors active in Africa) on investment protection for their investments, in addition to what is provided for under domestic law. This appears to have led to a consequential lack of appreciation by African-based investors of the value of ensuring their investment(s) in other African jurisdictions are protected from adverse measures by host governments. CDH's seminars and/or workshops demonstrated the need for greater knowledge transfer to clients and interested parties who are unable to attend our seminars or workshops.

Investment protection is particularly important to sectors exposed to government measures such as the resources and energy sectors (also sectors such as telecommunications, water and sanitation etc.) to protect or mitigate against actions such as expropriation or nationalisation by host governments. However, the value of investor protection for Intra-Africa investment does not appear to be appreciated and understood.  

International investment law is a complex and an involved subject matter with various interlinking facets – and, as an effort by CDH to increase the awareness and understanding of international investment protection, we prepared a series of video inserts to highlight pertinent issues to consider. The inserts  provides a high-level overview of aspects such as:-

a) the international investment protection framework;

b) what is an investor;

c) what is an investment;

d) guarantees by host governments;

e) mitigation measures against political risk;

f) international investment arbitrations.   

 

We hope these inserts will enhance the understanding of international investment protection for investors.

It should be noted that the issues dealt with in the video inserts during the next few weeks are not exhaustive, and can never do justice to this complex and involved subject matter. Each aspect to be discussed has its own complexities as will be highlighted in the cover note to each video insert and should a listener or reader require more information on such particular topic feel free to contact Jackwell Feris Jackwell.Feris@cdhlegal.com or +27(0)11 562 1825

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