Worldwide: 南部非洲发展共同体及其关于金融与投资的协议

保护撒哈拉以南非洲地区的外国投资:南部非洲发展共同体及其关于金融与投资的协议

撒哈拉以南之非洲地区的经济产出正在以接近全球增长率两倍的速度扩张 1 这样高水平的增长使得该地区成为一块吸引外国投资的磁石,特别是那些与基础设施投资、能源生产和矿业有关的投资。在这些国家的外国投资面临的最大不利风险是政治风险。对于外国投资者而言,这些风险必须由国际法律保护来解决。

通常情况下,投资者会利用双边投资协议("双边投资协议")来构建他们的投资。这些协议为外国投资者提供了实质性的保护,比如对公平与公正的待遇、国民待遇的保证以及对保护其免于征用的保证。并且,为了消除在当地法院解决争议的敏感性,这些协议一般包括强制仲裁条款,以解决投资国和另一签字国的外国投资者之间的争端。目前南部非洲 2 的15个国家与其他国家 3 之间签订的有效双边投资协议有240部。

然而,对于在南部非洲15个国家的投资者来说,双边投资协议并不是国际法律保护的唯一途径。几乎所有这些国家都是南部非洲发展共同体("南共体")的成员。这一区域实体主要是为了促进经济发展和各成员国之间的融合,但它不仅是关注于促进共同体内的投资;管理该共同体的公约也规定了促进外部投资的条款。2010年4月16日生效的南共体金融和投资协议("协议"),包含了在南共体对外国投资者的国际保护,类似于那些通常包含在双边投资协议中的国际保护。 4 最重要的是,协议给外国投资者提供了直接针对成员国发起有约束力的国际仲裁程序的能力,而这些仲裁程序可能会导致有执行力的损害赔偿。虽然自协议生效起,仲裁程序只实行了短短三年半的时间,但是投资者与国家间的仲裁是解决在这个新兴地区作出重大投资所产生的内在政治风险的重要工具。

下面我们会解释,该协议完全不同于典型双边投资协议或多边投资协议,那些典型的投资协议通常包含参照投资者国籍或注册成立地或企业所在地而对投资者所作的精确定义。不同于大多数(若非全部)双边投资协议的是,该协议允许在南共体国家受影响的,来自任何其他国家的投资者,针对违反国有化禁令和公平与公正待遇的保证之行为提出权利请求。根据协议,在穷尽当地救济,并且自南共体成员国接到该权利请求通知起至少六个月过后的情况下,投资者有权为与经批准的投资相关的纠纷提请有约束力的国际仲裁。如下所详述,近期的政治事件基本上已经将对依据协议进行如此有约束力的仲裁的仲裁庭的选择减少为国际投资争端解决中心仲裁和依据联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁规则进行的临时仲裁。即便如此,如果东道国拒绝国际投资争端解决中心仲裁,则投资者必须诉诸于临时的联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁。

尽管存在某些显著缺陷,但是该协议为在南共体成员国的外国投资者提供了重要的保护:其禁止资产或投资的国有化并且保证公平与公正待遇;其允许外国投资者将他们与成员国之间的纠纷提升至国际层面并且依据国际投资争端解决中心或者联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁规则提起仲裁;而且,关键是,不论投资者的国籍,其对所有外国投资者都提供这种保护。

南部非洲发展共同体条约

南共体于1992年8月17日根据条约 5 成立,条约第4条概述了共同体及其成员国的基本原则,如坚持"法治"以及致力于"和平解决争端"的原则。为实现这些目标,该条约建立了一系列制度机制,包括一个常设法庭"以确保对[该]条约和附属文书条款的遵守及正确解释并且裁决此类纠纷。" 6 该条约还规定,"成员国将签署各种为了合作的必要协定,其应阐明合作与融合的目的和范围,以及体制机制。"其中之一就是南共体金融和投资协议,旨在金融和投资领域中,促进区域发展和一体化。

协议所涵盖的投资

协议的总目标体现在第3条:"缔约国应协调各自的投资制度,并在附件1所列的区域内建立一个有利的投资环境。附件1中所载的范围和实质性保护类似于在双边投资协议中的同等条款,除了几个重要例外。"

举例来说,"投资者"和"投资"的定义相较典型的双边投资协议界定得不太明确。在某些方面,这使得该协议的应用变得模糊和存在潜在的问题,但是在其他方面,它提供了目标明确且广泛的法律保护。"投资"被广泛定义为"生产性投资和投资组合资产的购买、收购或者建立,"包括(但不限于)动产和不动产、公司股票和股份、金钱请求权、合同实际履行、知识产权,以及依据法律或合同授予的权利(特许权)。 7 对于所涵盖的投资者的唯一限制是,必须是被批准投资或已作出投资的法人或自然人。 8 重要的是,不像大多数(若非全部)双边投资协议,该定义并不将受保护的投资者限制于南共体成员国的国民或公司。因此,这完全不同于典型的双边投资协议或多边投资协议,那些典型的投资协议包含参照投资者国籍或注册成立地或企业所在地而对投资者所作的精确定义。 9

依据协议的实质性保护

主要的实质性保护措施包含在协议的第5条和第6条,分别禁止国有化和保证公平与公正待遇。第5条规定:"在任何缔约国境内的[投]资不得被收归国有或征用,除非为公共目的、根据正当法律程序、在非歧视的基础上,并支付及时、充分、有效的补偿。"这大致相当于惯常的国际法标准,只有当满足一定的条件,特别是满足公平补偿的支付的条件下,成员国才可以征收外国财产。然而,与典型的双边投资协议不同的是,协议第5条没有明确界定"间接征收"或者"与国有化有相同效果"或"相当于"国有化的措施。 10

协议第6(1)条更广泛地通过保证"在任何缔约国领土内的公平与公正待遇"承诺"区域内有良好的投资环境。"这一条款提供了与现代双边投资协议中相同的保证,特别是第6(2)条承诺,根据协议适用于外国投资者的"公平与公正待遇"标准,不得低于对第三国的投资者承诺的标准。

附件中的第7条和第14条描述了这些实质性的保护措施。第7条确认"缔约国可根据各自国内立法给予合格投资和投资者优惠待遇,以实现国家发展目标",并指出同意最终协调其各自国内政策与立法以满足第6条所列的非歧视精神。第14条规定"本附件不得解释为禁止缔约国行使其为公共利益而进行规管和采取、维持或实行任何其认为适当的措施在保护健康、安全和环境的前提下进行投资活动的权利。" 11

与典型的国际投资协议另一个重大不同是,该协议包含对投资者行为的规定。附件第10条设定外国投资者"企业责任"的义务遵守东道国的法律、法规、行政方针和政策。第13条还一般性地规定,成员国承认"通过放松国内健康、安全或环境的措施来鼓励投资是不恰当的",并且同意不违背在这方面的国际义务。

协议下的争端解决

协议第27条保证投资者"有权向[当地]法院、司法和行政法庭和其他根据东道国法的主管机关提起诉求,以处理关于与任何投资有关的任何事项的申诉。" 12 当然,这种担保很难成为对投资争端的有效救济办法。投资者与国家间的仲裁的主要好处是,它将争议带离可能对外国投资者有偏见的东道国国内法律体系,特别是在挑战国家本身行为的情况下。此外,国内法院往往可能没有法律专业知识和经验来摆脱国内制度的限制以给予国际法适当的关注及尊重。 13 "这也正是为什么投资协议仲裁对那些正担心潜在的偏见、效率低下、或对外国法院不熟悉的外国投资者具有吸引力。 14

多半因为这个原因,第28条赋予投资者将争议提交有约束力的国际仲裁的权利。根据这一规定,"投资者与缔约国之间关于针对前者经批准的投资而由后者承担的义务的尚未得到友好解决的争议,在穷尽当地救济以及在收到书面诉求通知六个月后,若争议的任一方有此意愿,应当提交国际仲裁 。"15 因此,在穷尽当地救济并且自南共体成员国接到该诉求通知起至少六个月过后的情况下,投资者有权为经批准投资的相关纠纷提请仲裁。 16

就现有的仲裁庭而言,第28(2)条名义上给投资者提供三个选项:(i)南共体法庭;(ii)国际投资争端解决中心("ICSID")或ICSID附加便利机制;或(iii)根据联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁规则("UNCITRAL规则")所进行的仲裁。然而,近期的政治事件基本上已经将对仲裁庭的选择限于国际投资争端解决中心和依据联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁规则进行仲裁。2011年5月,在南共体国家元首和政府首脑会议上,南共体法庭被暂停。 17 2012年8月,另一南共体首脑会议商讨了被暂停的南共体法庭的问题并决定应当商议一个新法庭以及其指令应限于对南共体关于成员国之间争议的条约与协议的解释。这会使得南共体法庭成为对于国际投资仲裁无用的工具。

此外,第28条允许各国抵制仲裁,以有效地将投资者对仲裁庭的选择限制为唯一的选项:根据联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁规则的临时仲裁。第28(3)条规定,在"接到诉求通知"的三个月内对上述法庭没有达成任何协议的,当事人"必须将争议提交依据[联合国国际贸易法委员会]仲裁规则的仲裁。"虽然第28(3)条允许争议当事人双方"以书面方式修改这些规则,"但似乎投资者不能在与被诉国没有协议的情况下选择除联合国国际贸易法委员会之外的仲裁庭。

根据1965年关于解决国家和其他国家国民投资争端的华盛顿公约 18或者1958年承认及执行外国仲裁裁决的纽约公约,ICSID或UNCITRAL规则下的仲裁作出的有利的损害赔偿裁决对东道国的资产可能有强制执行力。 19

结语

在南共体成员国投资会带来明显的风险。而投资者最好起草合同和协议以利用对商事仲裁的选择、现有的双边投资协议以及其他有效的多边协议,并且了解南共体协议所提供的交叉保护和义务是同样重要的。尽管存在缺陷,该协议为在南共体成员国的外国投资者提供了重要的保护:其禁止资产或投资的国有化并且保证对外国投资者的公平与公正待遇;其允许外国投资者将他们与成员国之间的纠纷提升至国际层面并且依据国际投资争端解决中心或者联合国国际贸易法委员会仲裁规则提起仲裁;而且不论投资者的国籍,其对所有外国投资者都广泛地提供这种保护。如果产生了与南共体的成员国的争议,在可行的选项中应该考虑该协议的有效索赔和救济方式。

Footnotes

[1] 非洲脉搏,第七卷(世界银行),2013年4月,于http://www.worldbank.org/content/dam/Worldbank/document/Africa/Report/Africas-Pulse-brochure_Vol7.pdf可见。

[2] 组成南部非洲这一区域的国家有安哥拉、博茨瓦纳、刚果、莱索托、马达加斯加、马拉维、毛里求斯、莫桑比克、纳米比亚、塞舌尔、南非、斯威士兰、坦桑尼亚、赞比亚民主共和国和津巴布韦。

[3] 完整的有效双边投资协定清单,请见联合国贸易与发展会议(UNCTAD), 双边投资协定国家具体清单,于http://unctad.org/en/Pages/DIAE/International%20Investment%20Agreements%20(IIA)/Country-specific-Lists-of-BITs.aspx.可见。必须注意的是,在过去三年里,南部非洲对其双边投资协定进行了审查并且决定在缺乏强烈政治或经济理由的情况下,抑制达成进一步双边投资协定,以及终止有可能协商出新模式的现存双边投资协定。请见Xavier Carim的"Lessons from South Africa's BITs Review"哥伦比亚外国直接投资观察,109号,2013年11月25日,于http://www.vcc.columbia.edu/content/lessons-south-africa-s-bits-review可见。南部非洲可能终止现存有效的双边投资协定,但是在终止日之前所需的投资与建设从该日期起10至15年的期间内将仍受保护,取决于相关双边投资协定协议的终止理由。

[4] 请见"南共体金融和投资协议,"2006年8月18日,于http://www.sadc.int/documents-publications/show/1009可见。协议由以下国家的国家或政府元首于2006年8月18日签署:安哥拉、博茨瓦纳、刚果、莱索托、马达加斯加、马拉维、毛里求斯、莫桑比克、纳米比亚、南非、斯威士兰、坦桑尼亚、赞比亚民主共和国和津巴布韦。

[5] 南共体宣言与条约,1998年2月28日,于http://www.sadc.int/documents-publications/show/Declaration__Treaty_of_SADC.pdf可见。

[6] 同上,第16条。

[7] "南共体金融和投资协议,"见脚注4,附件1第1条。定义由附加条款进行描述,其允许任何缔约国排除"具有投机性质的或任何对其发展敏感的部门或会对经济产生负面影响的短期投资",只要南共体秘书处在协议生效的三个月内通知缔约国援引该附加条款。

[8] 同上。

[9] 举例说,"美国政府与刚果人民共和国政府有关相互鼓励和保护投资的协定,美国-刚果",第1条,1994年8月12日,协定号NO.102-1.于http://tcc.export.gov/Trade_Agreements/Bilateral_Investment_Treaties/index.asp可见。(一方公司是指任何企业、公司、协会或者其他组织,根据一方或行政区关于是否为获利或私有或政府所有组织的法律法规依法成立的。)

[10] 举例说,"美国与莫桑比克共和国有关鼓励和相互保护投资的协定,美国-莫桑比克",第3条,1990年2月12日,协定号NO.106-31,于http://tcc.export.gov/Trade_Agreements/Bilateral_Investment_Treaties/index.asp可见("1.任何一方不得直接或通过相当于征收或国有化的手段间接征收或国有化协定所涵盖的投资")

[11] 第6(2)条可视作最惠国地位条款。

[12] 保证有权向当地法院与行政机构提起诉求,第27条相当于对拒绝对外国投资者公正裁判的禁止。

[13] Charles N. Brower 与 Lee A. Steven,《谁该来裁判?:发展北美自由贸易区下的国际法律规则》第11章,芝加哥国际法期刊193,196(2001)

[14] Andrea Kupfer Schneider,相处:国际贸易组织争端解决机制的演变,20 密歇根国际法期刊697,717 (1998-1999)。

[15] "南共体金融和投资协议,"见脚注4,附件1第28条。

[16] 有关这些先决条件的条款,"承认投资"和"当地救济"在协定或协议中为明确定义,其可能表现这些希望根据协议发起仲裁程序的外国投资者的管辖权问题。

[17] 南共体法庭主页,http://www.sadc.int/about-sadc/sadc-institutions/tribun/。南共体法庭的暂停是由其在Mike Campbell (Pvt) Ltd v. the Republic of Zimbabwe (2/2007), [2008] 南共体法庭 2,2008年11月28日,一案中第一次针对成员国的裁决导致的。该裁决发现津巴布韦种族歧视和非法攫取土地,裁决被该国家所忽视,表明了南共体法庭没有权力并且拒绝承认其为合法机构。请见Sarah Hagar,南共体法庭为合法性而斗争, Tribunal Struggles for Legitimacy,国际特设组织,2009年9月3日,于 http://blog.amnestyusa.org/justice/sadc-tribunal-struggles-for-legitimacy/可见。南共体法庭的命运进一步说明该地区的法律不稳定。

[18] 请见关于解决国家和其他国家国民投资争端的公约,于华盛顿签署完成,1965年3月18日。关于目前签署状态,请见ICSID,"公约的缔约国与签署国名单",于 https://icsid.worldbank.org/ICSID/FrontServlet?requestType=ICSIDDocRH&actionVal=ContractingStates&ReqFrom=Main可见。

[19] 请见"承认及执行外国仲裁裁决的公约",于纽约签署完成,1958年6月10日。关于签署状态,请见联合国国际贸易法委员会网站,UNCITRAL, 文本与状态,国际商事仲裁与调解,于http://www.uncitral.org/uncitral/en/uncitral_texts/arbitration/NYConvention_status.html可见。

来自华盛顿办公室的 James Egerton-Vernon 与 Michael Rooney 协助了这篇评论的准备工作。

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Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.

Disclaimer

The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.

General

Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

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