‘Dangerous’ EU Investment Court must be put on hold – Matt Carthy MEP
Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy has called on the European Commission to halt all negotiations on the Multilateral Investment Court pending the outcome of a European Court hearing which began this week. Speaking following the first day of a hearing into the Court’s compatibility with EU law, Carthy said:
“The European Commission must respect due process on this matter.
“It is common knowledge that the European Commission is already paving out the way for the establishment of a Multilateral Investment Court at international level.
“Parliamentary Questions I have submitted on this matter over the past number of months and years have shown an increasing intensity in the work to get this Court up and running.
“The European Court of Justice has already ruled that an Investor State Dispute Mechanism (ISDS) included in a bilateral treaty between two European Member States is incompatible with the Treaties. And now there is a likelihood that the Court will rule that the Permanent Investment Court System (ICS) included in the EU-Canada Comprehensive Free trade Agreement (CETA) is also incompatible with the EU law.
“The hearing, which began in the ECJ in Luxembourg this week, is the result of a legal challenge by Wallonia (French speaking region in Belgium) to this new Court system.
“The proposed Multilateral Investment Court and the Investment Court system in CETA, as the Tribunal in the Achmea case, are set up exclusively for wealthy investors removed from national and EU judicial systems. It is an extremely dangerous concept that cannot ensure the full effectiveness of EU law and will have an impact on legislation enacted in Ireland.
“There is also a real danger that the creation of these Investment Courts, removed from national accountability, will infringe on the Irish Constitution to the detriment of decision-making in the public interest.
“I am again urging the European Commission to halt all negotiations to progress this Court pending the outcome of this Court case. The Irish government must now resolve to prevent such courts being established considering the potential damage that decisions from such a court could have on vulnerable sectors such as Irish agriculture and the undermining of Irish democratic & judicial structures that would undoubtedly follow.”
The Court will deliver its Decision in October 2018.