Keywords: international trade, foreign investment, international investment, international investment treaties, international investment treaties, bilateral investment treaties This essay traces the history of these international investment treaties. He notes that the story so far spans three different eras. The first, the colonial period, began in the late eighteenth century and lasted until the end of World War II. The second, the postcolonial era, began with the end of the war and lasted until about 1990, with the collapse of the Soviet Union. The third, the world era, began around 1990 and continues to this day. One of the most remarkable phenomena of international law over the past fifteen years has been the extraordinary increase in the number of agreements on the protection or liberalization of foreign investment. Today there are more than 2500 such agreements, the vast majority of which have been concluded since 1990. This figure includes nearly 2400 bilateral investment treaties (BITs) as well as more than 200 trade agreements containing investment provisions. Although the number of agreements has accelerated considerably in recent years, international investment agreements have a long history. The provisions relating to the protection of property abroad are found in the international treaties of the late eighteenth century.
Keywords: foreign investment, trade agreements, investment agreements, colonial period, postcolonial era, global era. U.C. Davis Journal of International Law & Policy, Vol. 12, No. 1, p. 157, 2005 701 B StreetSuite 110San Diego, CA 92101United States619-961-4348 (telephone). . . .