(...) On 11 December 2015, the "Contemporary Issues of International Law" conference took place for the fourth time. As in the past, it was jointly organised by Dr Stefan Lorenzmeier and Prof. Dr Vasilika Sancin, Chair of International Law at the University of Ljubljana. This time, the general topic was "Challenges of International Trade and Investment Law", a highly relevant topic in the field of international investment protection.
The speakers from both the academic and practical world dealt intensively with questions of the TTIP and the legal protection system, in particular the establishment of a permanent investment arbitration tribunal, on one hand, and on the other, with more extensive catalogues of questions of investment law. For example, Prof. Dr. Thomas M.J. Möllers spoke on the draft TTIP agreement and highlighted the problem areas that are currently under discussion. Prof. Dr. Sancin reported on the draft of a permanent investment arbitration system and the corresponding proposal of the EU Commission. Dr Thomas Wiedmann (EU Commission), Arne Fuchs (McDermott), Dr Alessandro Covi (Herbert Smith) and Sebastian Wuschka (Luther Rechtsanwälte) gave practical presentations. The presentations dealt in particular with the problem of so-called "intra-EU investment arbitration treaties", which are considered illegal by the EU Commission. In the discussions, the different points of view were dealt with in depth and quite controversially, whereby the necessity of an international investment protection system was assessed very positively by the participants. At the same time, the risks of a system that is too far-reaching were recognised, but these could be significantly minimised if addressed in the right legal way.
The event was generously supported by the Augsburg Center for Global Economic Law and Regulation (ACELR), the Society of Friends of the University of Augsburg e.V. (GdF) and Luther Rechtsanwälte. There are plans to continue the series of events in 2017 with conferences in Augsburg and Ljubljana on the topic of environmental protection.