Professor Andreas R. Ziegler (Law School of the University of Lausanne) has just edited a special issue with the contributions to the Annual Meeting 2020 of the Swiss Society of International Law (held in Lausanne in November 2020) on the topic "Switzerland and International Investment Law", including his introduction "Switzerland and International Investment Law - why it matters").
International Investment Law has become one of the hot topics of the current debate on the future sustainable international economic order. Several international fora (OECD, UNCTAD, ICSID, UNCTAD, EU) keep working on a reform of this area (in particular the dispute settlement) and newsletters and blogs are full of criticism of the current system both with regard to the substance and the procedures. At the same time, this is not a new phenomenon and especially in the case of Switzerland the respective discussions go back for more than a century. This is not surprising when one looks at the importance of foreign direct investment (FDI) for this country and the legal practice that the Swiss administration has developed to remain an attractive seat of foreign investors and a competitive place for the settlement of (investment) disputes. This (short) introduction to the contributions from the scientific conference held in the framework of the Annual Meeting of the Swiss Society of International Law (SSDI/SVIR) held in Lausanne on 13 November 2020 tries to show why the current debate on international investment law is so important for Switzerland and which questions will occupy the administration, practicing lawyers, tribunals, academia and civil society in the years to come.