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Hub News Article Nov 27, 2015

UNCTAD– ICIEC: 10 Years of Building Capacity on Investment Policies

Since 2005 UNCTAD and the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment and Export Credit (ICIEC) have been implementing a capacity-building programme to assist the 56 member countries of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) in the design of international investment agreements (IIAs) that take into consideration the emergence of a new generation of investment policies. In line with UNCTAD's Investment Policy Framework for Sustainable Development (IPFSD) and UNCTAD's Roadmap for IIA Reform, the Programme has helped policy makers and negotiators to deepen their understanding and analysis of the key issues in IIAs; the Programme offers concrete options for the design and negotiation of IIAs that effectively promote sustainable development and inclusive growth. Since 2012 the Programme also includes sessions on national investment policies and regulation. The Programme is implemented in Morocco in close cooperation with the IDB regional office in Rabat. The next workshop will take place in Casablanca from 12 to 15 January 2016.

The course is targeted at Government officials in charge of investment policy and strategy issues, in particular the negotiation of IIAs, and the management of investor-State dispute settlement cases. Each applicant requires government endorsement. The project trained over 300 government officials from over 45 countries on key issues in IIAs since 2005.

The Programme is organized once a year following a thematic agenda dealing with the most pressing issues arising from IIAs. These range from ensuring policy coherence between IIAs, national regulation and development strategies; managing investor-State disputes; designing clear and explicit IIA clauses; balancing investors' rights and obligations (in line with corporate social responsibility principles); safeguarding policy space for other public policies (e.g. climate change, labour, health); and negotiating strategies.

The Programme has encouraged stakeholders from a broad spectrum of the investment community to address challenges, harness opportunities and develop policy solutions for creating synergy between investment policies and sustainable development goals. In implementing the Programme, UNCTAD and the IDB partnered with several regional and international organizations, the private sector and academia. Partners include: Moroccan Investment Development Agency (AMDI), Moroccan Ministry of Finance, Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Islamic Center for Development of Trade (ICDT), Energy Charter Treaty, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), Kiel University, Allen and Overy, King and Spalding.

For more information please contact Mr. Hamed El-Kady at hamed.el.kady@unctad.org or +41 22 917 21 35

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