EU sets up rules to settle dispute between investor, state

BRUSSELS, July 23 (Xinhua) -- Foreign ministers of the European Union (EU) Wednesday approved a regulation for managing financial responsibility linked to investor-to-state dispute settlement, the council of EU said in a statement.

The regulation, part of a broader EU framework for investment protection policy, provides clarity as to whether the EU or the member state conducts the defence of a case and pays the final award or settlement amount when investor-to-state arbitration proceedings take place.

"The regulation is a key element of the EU's investment policy," the statement said. "This new policy involves, on the one hand, the negotiation of new rules on investment with key trading partners and, on the other hand, the continued application of existing bilateral investment treaties between member states and third countries."

International agreements include the possibility that an investor from a third country may bring a claim against the EU or a member state, which is alleged to have acted inconsistently with the agreement.

The new rules specifying how cooperation between the European Commission and the member states should be structured in specific cases will help for managing the financial consequences of the disputes.