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Amicable Resolution of Disputes

Investment disputes

Article 26 of the Energy Charter Treaty allows parties to a dispute to agree to use good offices, structured negotiation, mediation or conciliation using existing mechanisms or even agreeing on a tailor-made mechanism. 

In 2016, the Energy Charter Conference endorsed the Guide on Investment Mediation and encouraged Contracting Parties to consider to use mediation on voluntary basis as one of the options at any stage of the dispute to facilitate its amicable solution and to consider the good offices of the Energy Charter Secretariat. The Conference also welcomed the willingness of the Contracting Parties to facilitate effective enforcement in their Area of settlement agreements with foreign investors in accordance with the applicable law and the relevant domestic procedures. The Guide was prepared with the support of the International Mediation Institute (IMI), the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC), the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA).

On 22 May 2015 the Energy Charter Secretariat successfully organised the first global dialogue between governments and energy companies on the resolution of international energy disputes. Representatives of governments, companies and international organisations discussed the benefits of mediation and other alternative resolution mechanisms. The common message was the importance of dialogue and mediation to amicably solve international energy disputes before the problem escalates into a full claim.

Transit disputes

Early Warning Mechanism: In 2014 the Conference welcomed a Model Energy Charter Early Warning Mechanism that parties can refer to, voluntarily, on a case by case basis, in order to prevent and overcome emergency situations in the energy sector related to the Transit and supply of electricity, natural gas, oil and oil products through cross-border grids and pipelines. 

Conciliation: Article 7.7 provides a specialised conciliation mechanism for transit disputes, allowing for a faster and less formal procedure. The conciliation rules were last amended in 2015 and a commentary was endorsed by the Conference in 2016. The Conference also encouraged Contracting Parties to consider to use, on voluntary basis, the Conciliation mechanism to facilitate a fast and amicable solution of transit disputes between Contracting Parties.