Nicholas J. Diamond,
Pandemics, Emergency Measures, and ISDS. 2021.4.13,
In extraordinary times, States take extraordinary measures. In the current moment, States have adopted (and very likely will adopt additional) emergency measures to address the severe and interwoven public health and economic threats posed by the pandemic. History tells us that such measures often have downstream effects on investor-State dispute settlement (“ISDS”). Expanding on themes considered byothers recently, this post briefly explores these issues.
Sang Jin Lee,Michael van Muelken,
Virtual Hearing Guidelines: A Comparative Analysis and Direction for the Future. 2021.06.23,
Before the first reported case of COVID-19, major international arbitration institutions already began accepting the necessity of virtual hearings in certain situations. Guidelines for virtual hearings were officially announced with the escalation of the COVID-19 pandemic. This article explores three widely cited “guidelines” and discuss ongoing developments focusing on addressing potential shortcomings of virtual hearings.
Can Pharmaceutical Companies Counter the Waiver of their Patents for COVID-19 Vaccines through Investment Treaty Arbitration? 2021.05.26,
This post analyzes whether the pharmaceutical companies that have developed COVID-19 vaccines may have an actionable claim under international investment agreements against States waiving intellectual property rights over such vaccines. More specifically, it examines whether the vaccine developers may face jurisdictional and other threshold obstacles in pursuing their investment claims, and whether they may be entitled to compensation under the substantive standards of protection. The aim is to identify and offer a general overview of the principal legal issues, it being understood that the analysis may differ depending on the language of the applicable IIA, the circumstances of a specific case, and the final shape that the patent waiver initiative may take in different jurisdictions.
Lucy Martinez,James Nicholson,Noah RubinsandHafez Virjee,
A Black Swan Event? Implications of COVID-19 for Damages and Valuations in International Arbitration, 2021.03.15,
The onset of COVID-19 has brought significant volatility to financial markets and increased uncertainty for investors and businesses of all classes. In the arena of international arbitration, where stakes can be in the multibillions, the ability to assess damages despite this uncertainty is of paramount importance.This post addressed some insights in navigating damages and valuations amidst COVID-19, specificallyCOVID-19 as a Black Swan or force majeure event; shifts in dispute strategy in response to COVID-19; challenges in valuation resulting from COVID-19and lessons and parallels to be drawn from the Great Financial Crisis in 2008.
The Staggering Number of Kids Who Have Lost a Parent to COVID-19, 2021.10.17,
An estimate published recently in the journal Pediatrics indicate at least 140,000 American children had lost a parent or caregiver because of the coronavirus by the end of June.
Newly Discovered Bat Viruses Give Hints to Covid’s Origins, 2021.10.15,
This article illustrate that scientists traveled into the forests of northern Laos to catch bats that might harbor close cousins of the Covid-19 pathogen in the summer of 2020.
UK govt botched initial Covid response: MPs' probe, 2021.10.12,
That report said Leading advisors were guilty of "groupthink" and pushed a "gradual and incremental approach" to interventions such as social distancing, isolation and lockdowns, but lso praised the government's rapid launch of a mass vaccination campaign against Covid in December, arguing that had "redeemed" some of the earlier failings.
Trade marking ‘COVID’ and ‘Coronavirus’ in the USA: an empirical review, 2021.06.11,
The author reviews the applications including the terms ‘COVID’ and ‘Coronavirus’ filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in 2020 and find that the COVID-19 pandemic led not only to a large number of filings for medical and pandemic related products, but also for unrelated and promotional products. Individuals and small businesses were the largest groups of filing entities. Moreover, over two-thirds of the filings were submitted based on intent-to-use rather than use in commerce. The author considers the number of filings closely mirrored the development of the pandemic during the various months of 2020 and concludes that one of the lessons that could be derived from the COVID-19 pandemic, and this unprecedented number of applications, is the need to further study the phenomenon of ‘sensation-drive’ trade mark filings and the problems that these filings can represent for the trade mark system.
Edward S W Ti,
Of Landlords and Tenants: Property in the Midst of a Pandemic, 2021.07.01,
The author provides an overview of the regulatory protections given to business tenancies during the pandemic, as well as under the Landlord and Tenant Acts 1927 and 1954. The special responsibility owners have to not use their property in a harmful manner provides a strong basis to justify these regulations. The author advocates a modified version of Honoré’ s incident of ownership not to use property in a harmful manner. Drawing on theory, policy and the doctrine of frustration, the author explains why Honoré’ s incident provides the conceptual and ethical basis to justify not only the enactment of the coronavirus-inspired laws protecting business tenancies but more generally, when property rights can be statutorily interfered with.
Beijing Interest Group on Global Health and Global Governance