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Mozambique Investment Treaty

Mozambique import regulations on prohibited imports, license, etc.

Mozambique Investment Treaty

Postby bridgat » Mon Nov 17, 2008 3:17 am

U.S. Bilateral Investment Treaty Program

The U.S. Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) program supports several key U.S. Government economic policy objectives, including the protection of U.S. investment overseas and the promotion of market-oriented policies in other countries, as well as the indirect export promotion of U.S. goods and services.

The BIT program's basic aims are to:

-- protect U.S. investment abroad in those countries where U.S. investors' interests are not sufficiently protected through existing agreements such as U.S. treaties of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation;

-- encourage countries to adopt market-oriented domestic policies that treat private investment in an open, unbiased and transparent manner; and

-- support the development of international law standards consistent with these objectives.

The U.S. Government has placed a priority on negotiating BITs with countries undergoing economic development and reform, where we believe we can have a significant impact on the adoption of liberal policies on the treatment of foreign investment. BITs also complement and support our regional initiatives on investment liberalization, such as the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC) and the Free Trade Area of the Americas. In addition, BITs lay the policy groundwork for broader multilateral initiatives in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

U.S. Bilateral Investment Treaties are designed to create a stable framework that protects investment by providing U.S. investors with six basic benefits:

First, our BITs set forth obligations whereby each Party commits to treat investments of the other Party as favorably as it treats domestic and third-country investments.

-- U.S. investments are entitled to the better of national treatment (NT) or most-favored-nation (MFN) treatment throughout the life cycle of the investment, i.e., from pre-establishment to operation and disposition, subject to certain limited and specifically described exceptions, which are listed in annexes or protocols to the treaties.

Second, BITs establish clear limits on the expropriation of investments and entitle U.S. investors to be fairly compensated.

-- Expropriation can occur only in accordance with the principles of customary international law, that is, for a public purpose, in a nondiscriminatory manner, under due process of law, and accompanied by payment of prompt, adequate, and effective compensation.

Third, BITs provide U.S. investors the right to transfer funds into and out of the host country without delay using a market rate of exchange. This covers all transfers related to an investment, including interest, proceeds from liquidation, repatriated profits and infusions of additional financial resources after the initial investment has been made. Ensuring the right to transfer funds creates a predictable environment guided by market forces.

Fourth, BITs limit the ability of host governments to require U.S. investors to adopt inefficient and trade distorting practices. For example, performance requirements, such as local content or export quotas, are prohibited.

-- This provision may also open up new markets for U.S. producers and increase U.S. exports. U.S. investors protected by BITs can purchase competitive U.S.-produced components without undue restriction on inputs in their production of various products.

-- U.S. investors protected by BITs can also import other U.S.-produced products for distribution and sale in the local market. They cannot be forced, as a condition of establishment or operation, to export locally produced goods back to the U.S. market or to third-country markets.

Fifth, BITs give U.S. investors the right to submit an investment dispute with the treaty partner's government to international arbitration, if the dispute implicates treaty obligations. There is no general requirement to first use that country's domestic courts for investment matters covered by the BIT.

Sixth, BITs give U.S. investors the right to engage the top managerial personnel of their choice, regardless of nationality.

In addition to these obligations, the BITs set out a minimum standard of treatment based on standards found in customary international law.

For further information, contact the Bilateral Investment Treaty Coordinators at 202-736-4906 (Department of State) or 202-395-9679 (Office of the U.S. Trade Representative).
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