Brooklyn Journal of International Law


Taylor Bates

First Page



In 2018, South Africa’s much debated Protection of Investment Act, 2015 went into effect. Designed to replace the state’s bilateral investment treaties, the Act signified a radical shift in South Africa’s attitude towards international investment policy. South Africa’s decision to terminate its bilateral investment treaties is part of a larger, ongoing discussion surrounding investor-state dispute resolution reform. This Note seeks to examine South Africa’s Protection of Investment Act, 2015, its proposal for investor-state dispute settlement reform to Working Group III, and its comments during investor-state dispute settlement reform meetings, through the lens of Albert Hirschman’s Exit, Voice, and Loyalty theory. This Note argues that, contrary to both popular belief and statements made by South Africa, South Africa’s apparent exit from the international investment regime is part of a long-term policy strategy to promote advantageous investor-state dispute settlement reform.