Protection of Intellectual Property Rights in Investor-State Arbitration: Underlying Challenges and Perspectives




intellectual property rights, intellectual property disputes, IPRs holders, investment arbitration, bilateral investment treaties, foreign investment


This article provides an analysis of existing international mechanisms for protecting intellectual property rights and concludes whether investment arbitration can be an effective forum for resolving intellectual property disputes. It focuses on an examination of the scope of intellectual property rights protection by bilateral investment agreements, as well as the specifics of the investment dispute resolution procedure. In addition, the analysis includes an assessment of the territoriality principle of intellectual property rights and its application in Ukrainian law, as well as an examination of international investment treaties concluded with Ukraine to determine the scope of protection afforded to intellectual property.

Author Biographies

Kateryna Lazarchuk, Hillmont Partners, Ukraine

Kateryna Lazarchuk is an Associate with the International Dispute Resolution Practice at Hillmont Partners. She specializes on complex domestic litigation, cross-border dispute resolution and international arbitration. She has advised on disputes arising from contract law issues and non-contractual liability, bankruptcy and debt collection, as well as on exports and imports of goods and services.

Oksana Zadniprovska, Axon Partners, Ukraine

Oksana Zadniprovska is an Attorney-at-law and a Partner at Axon Partners. She advises the IT companies on privacy, including data protection and compliance, intellectual property and contract law. She has acted as a counsel to technocrats, the IT business of any size and categories (start-ups and incubators, outsourcing companies, product companies, etc.).


  1. Agreement between Ukraine and the Republic of Slovenia on the mutual promotion and protection of investments, effective as of June 1, 2000. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  2. Agreement between the Belgo-Luxemburg Economic Union and the Government of Ukraine on the Reciprocal Promotion and Protection of Investments, effective as of July 27, 2001. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  3. Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of Ukraine for the Promotion and Protection of Investments, effective as of July 24, 1995. Accessed at October 10, 2021.
  4. Agreement between the Slovak Republic and Ukraine for the Promotion and Reciprocal Protection of Investments, effective as of February 20, 2009. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  5. Agreement between Japan and Ukraine for the Promotion and Protection of Investment, effective as of November 26, 2015. Accessed at October 10, 2021.
  6. Agreement between the Government of Ukraine and the Government of the Republic of Armenia for the Promotion and Reciprocal Protection of Investments, effective as of March 7, 1996, Accessed October 10, 2021.
  7. The Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Finland and the Government of Ukraine on the Promotion and Protection of Investments, effective as of December 7, 2005, Accessed October 10, 2021.
  8. Agreement in Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  9. Award in the ICSID Case No. ARB/16/34, Bridgestone Licensing Services, Inc. and Bridgestone Americas, Inc. v. The Republic of Panama, August 14, 2020, para. 314. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  10. Award in the ICSID Case No. ARB/15/29, Cortec Mining Kenya Limited, Cortec (Pty) Limited and Stirling Capital Limited v. the Republic of Kenya, October 22, 2018, paras. 313, 331. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  11. Award in ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/12/1, Apotex Holdings Inc, Apotex Inc. v. the United States, August 25, 2014 paras. 2.27–2.28, 9.40. Accessed October 11, 2021.
  12. Award in the ICSID Case No. ARB/10/7, Philip Morris Brands SARL, Phillip Morris Products S. A. and Abal Hermanos S. A. v. Oriental Republic of Uruguay, July 8, 2016, para. 288. Accessed October 11, 2021.
  13. Blackaby, Nigel, and Constantine Partasides QC, Alan Redfern, Martin Hunter. Redfern and Hunter on International Arbitration. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015.
  14. Boie, Bertram. “The Protection of Intellectual Property Rights through Bilateral Investment Treaties: Is there a TRIPS-plus Dimension?” Working Paper No. 2010/19 (November 2010).
  15. Borysenko, Viktoriia. “Zakhyst avtorskykh prav v IT [Protection of Copyrights in IT].” Electronic Journal “LAWYER&LAW” 35 (September 2020). Accessed October 10, 2021.
  16. Burrone, Esteban. “Why Intellectual Property Matters: The Importance of Intellectual Property for Small and Medium-sized
  17. Enterprises.” WIPO (1999) Accessed October 9, 2021.–10/Why%20IP%20Matters%20%28WIPO%2C%208%20p.%29.pdf.
  18. Chaisse, Julien, Puneeth Nagaraj. “Changing Lanes: Intellectual Property Rights, Trade and Investment.” Hastings International and Comparative Law Review 37, no. 2 (2014).
  19. Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization dated July 4, 1967 (amended as of September 28, 1979). Accessed October 9, 2021.
  20. Dolzer, Rudolf, Christoph Schreuer, “Principles of International Investment Law” 2nd Edition, Oxford: Oxford Publishing, 2012.
  21. Expropriation, UNCTAD Series on Issues in International Investment Agreements II, United Nations (2012). 6–7. Accessed October 11, 2021.
  22. Expropriation (Including of Intellectual Property/trademarks). “WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.” Accessed October 11, 2021.
  23. Evaluation of the WTO Dispute Settlement System: Results to Date. Accessed October 10, 2021,
  24. Ezell, Stephen and Nigel Cory. “The Way Forward for Intellectual Property Internationally” dated April 25, 2019. Accessed October 9, 2021.
  25. Final Award in case No. UNCT/14/2, Eli Lilly and Company v. the Government of Canada, March 16, 2017, para. 191. Accessed October 11, 2021.
  26. Van Harten, Gus and Martin Loughlin. “Investment Treaty Arbitration as a Species of Global Administrative Law.” The European Journal of International Law 17, no. 1. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  27. Intellectual Property, Magazine of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (2007), 17. Accessed October 9, 2021,
  28. Intellectual Property: Principles Governing Jurisdiction, Choice of Law and Judgements in Transnational Disputes (with Comments and Reporters’ Notes), The American Law Institute. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  29. Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS). Thomson Reuters Practical Law. Accessed October 10, 2021.–624–6147?transitionType=Default&contextData=(sc.Default).
  30. International Investment Treaties and Investor-State Dispute Settlement, Columbis Center on Sustainable Investment, updated as of May 32, 2019. Accessed October 10, 2021,
  31. Kolawole Oke, Emmanuel, “Territoriality in Intellectual Property Law: Examining the Tension between Securing Societal Goals and Treating Intellectual Property as an Investment Asset.” Scripted. 15, no.2 (2018), Accessed October 9, 2021.
  32. Liberti, Lahra, “Intellectual Property Rights in International Investment Agreements: An Overview.” OECD Working Papers on International Investment.” 2010/01:6.Accessed October 10, 2021.
  33. Meredith, Ian. “Investment Treaties: Taking Advantage of the Protections on Offer.” Cross-Border Quarterly. (July-September 2006) Accessed October 11, 2021.‑ba59–48c6–9cee‑3a6cc7752bae/presentation/publicationattachment/3d33ea17–3a8a‑4893‑a438–3e510a156091/inv_treat.pdf.
  34. OECD. “Fair and Equitable Treatment Standard in International Investment Law.”
  35. OECD Working Papers on International Investment, 2004/03, OECD Publishing, 8, Accessed October 11, 2021.‑2004_3.pdf.
  36. Part II Chapter 12 Protection of Intellectual Property. Accessed October 10, 2021.
  37. Pohl, J., K. Mashigo and A. Nohen. “Dispute Settlement Provisions in International Investment Agreements: A Large Sample Survey.” OECD Working Papers on International Investment, 2012/02 (OECD Publishing). 16 Accessed October 10, 2021.‑2012_2.pdf.
  38. Pratyush Nath Upreti. “The Role of National and International Intellectual Property Law and Policy in Reconceptualising the Definition of Investment.” IIC (2021) 52: 111–113.
  39. Partial award in case CME Czech Republic B. V. (The Netherlands) v. the Czech Republic, the UNCITRAL Arbitration Proceedings, September 13, 2001, para. 147, Accessed October 10, 2021.
  40. Panel Report in case No. WT/DS290/R, European Communities — Protection of Trademarks and Geographical Indications for Agricultural Products and Foodstuffs, March 15, 2005, para. 7.246, Accessed at October 10, 2021.
  41. Rudolf Dolzer, “The Notion of Investment in Recent Practice” in S. Charnovitz, D. P. Steger and P. van den Bosche (eds.), Law in the Service of Human Dignity: Essays in Honour of Florentino Feliciano (2005).
  42. Treaty between the United States of America and Ukraine Concerning the Encouragement and Reciprocal Protection of Investment, effective as of November 16, 1996, Accessed October 10, 2021.
  43. Vadi, Valentina S. “Towards a New Dialectics: Pharmaceutical Patents, Public Health and Foreign Direct Investments”, Journal of Intellectual Property and Entertainment Law 5, no. 1 (2015).
  44. WIPO Caseload Summary (2011–2020). Accessed October 10, 2021.
  45. Zakon Ukrainy “Pro mizhnarodne pryvatne pravo” № 2709-IV vid 23 chervnia 2005 roku [The Law of Ukraine “On Private International Law” No. 2709-IV dated June 23, 2005]. Accessed October 10, 2021.–15#Text.
  46. Zakon Ukrainy “Pro avtorske pravo i sumizhni prava” № 3792-XII vid 23 hrudnia 1993 roku [The Law of Ukraine “On Copyright and Related Rights” No. 3792-XII dated December 23, 1993]. Accessed October 10, 2021,–12#Text.
  47. Zammit, Joseph P. and Jamie Hu, “Arbitrating International Intellectual Property Disputes.” Mealey’s International Arbitration Reports 24, no. 6, (June 2009), Accessed October 10, 2021,




How to Cite

Lazarchuk, K., & Zadniprovska, O. (2021). Protection of Intellectual Property Rights in Investor-State Arbitration: Underlying Challenges and Perspectives. Kyiv-Mohyla Law and Politics Journal, (7), 77–94.