The Human Rights Of Water And Investment Law

962 Words Aug 11th, 2015 4 Pages
Given these difficulties, it is understandable why previous tribunals in have been reluctant to analyse the relationship between the human rights to water and investment law as a normative conflict, and have instead insisted that the obligations under each norm were not mutually exclusive. However, it is possible for a human rights norm to prevail, as shown by the tribunals in SPP and Chemtura. The respondent government in water grab case should argue BITs should not be interpreted so that a government is made to ignore its human rights obligations once it has entered into a concession with a foreign investor, and as there is no alternative but to reallocate water rights following a water grab, the investment protection norm and right to water are contradictory, and one must prevail.
4.2.2 Interpretation tool
Professor Viñuales classifies the second approach of tribunals applying human rights law as ‘a tool of interpretation.’ Another way a respondent can argue for the consideration of a human rights norm would be by interpreting investment norms in a way that excludes from the scope of their breach measures aimed at upholding human rights.
Article 31(3)(c) of the Vienna Convention on the Law of the Treaties holds that tribunals must interpret treaty obligations in light of relevant rules of international law applicable in the relations between the parties. The tribunal must situate the rules that are being invoked by those concerned in the context of other rules that…

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