Wed 28 July 2021
By Hanna Jez
On the 16 June 2021, Co-Director of the Herbert Smith Freehills China International Business and Economic Law (CIBEL) Centre, Professor Heng Wang was invited to present on the topic of “Investment Law Reform in Asia: China’s Evolving Approach to International Investment” at the CIL (Centre for International Law, National University of Singapore) and NYU (New York University) Webinar Series on Investment Law Reform in Asia. Speakers on this event included eminent experts, senior officials and leading scholars from around the globe – such as Meg Kinnear, the Secretary-General of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and more.
Professor Heng Wang was involved in the panel on “Investment Treaty Reform in Asia: Rule Markers, Takers or Breakers?” and addressed how to understand China’s approach to international investment law – including WTO investment facilitation negotiations, China’s bilateral investment treaties (including the most recent one with the EU), and the Belt and Road Initiative.
The presentation reflects that China is arguably selectively reshaping international investment law through inter alia, BRI primary agreements (e.g. MOUs) and BRI project agreements. This arguably differs from the traditional treaty-based approach in international investment law and practice.
The presentation is based on a number of research outputs of Professor Wang: (i) “Selective Reshaping: China’s Paradigm Shift in International Economic Governance”, (ii) “The Belt and Road Initiative Agreements: Characteristics, Rationale, and Challenges” and (iii) “China's Approach to the Belt and Road Initiative”. The video is available here.