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This unique compendium offers an article-by-article commentary on the Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States. Providing a comprehensive explanation of the functioning of this important mechanism for the settlement of investor-State disputes, it incorporates the preparatory work, the Convention's text, various rules and regulations adopted under the Convention, the practice of arbitral tribunals under the Convention, and academic writings on the subject. The first and second editions of this Commentary have been relied upon by numerous arbitral tribunals. This third edition follows the same system and approach, but extensive updates and revisions reflect the vast increase in arbitral practice since the publication of the second edition. A number of novel issues that have emerged through this practice are now addressed, making this practice-oriented guide an indispensable tool for anyone dealing with the ICSID Convention. Likewise, the number of contributors to and editors of the third edition has increased.
Art. 9 remained unchanged in all drafts to the Convention (History, Vol. I, p. 56). There was never any doubt that the Centre would have a chief administrative officer (History, Vol. II, pp. 56, 101). The creation of Deputy Secretaries-General led to some debate. There was a fear that the provision, as drafted, might lead to a proliferation of high officials. It was pointed out that this position should be filled only if warranted by the Centre's volume of business, possibly on a part-time basis (at pp. 117, 127, 384/5, 718). There was some discussion about the appointment of several Deputy Secretaries-General on a regional basis (at pp. 252, 718). A suggestion to limit the number of Deputy Secretaries-General in the text of the Convention did not prevail but in a vote it was decided to recommend language for the Report of the Executive Directors to the effect that at that time no more than one Deputy Secretary-General was foreseen (at pp. 718/9, 954, 968).
The Report of the Executive Directors on the Convention says in its para. 18:
… The Secretariat will consist of a Secretary-General, one or more Deputy Secretaries-General and staff. In the interest of flexibility the Convention provides for the possibility of there being more than one Deputy Secretary-General, but the Executive Directors do not now foresee a need for more than one or two full time high officials of the Centre.
In the First Draft, the text of what later became Art. 19 was still attached to the general statement that the Centre shall have international legal personality (History, Vol. II, p. 619) and was evidently meant as an explanation and elaboration of the general statement on legal personality. Later, a list of specific legal capacities, previously contained in a separate Article, was attached to the general statement on legal personality and capacity (see Art. 18, para. 2) to form what subsequently became Art. 18. As a consequence, the text of what became Art. 19 was put into a separate Article (History, Vol. I, p. 92). The legal relevance of this Article was not clarified in the discussions which barely touched upon it (History, Vol. II, pp. 739, 740, 743).
As it stands, Art. 19 is no more than a general introduction to the subsequent Articles. The Section referred to covers Arts. 18–24. The statement “to enable the Centre to fulfil its functions” may help to establish the exact extent of the immunities and privileges set out in the Convention. But the travaux préparatoires contain no indication that immunities and privileges that do not serve the Centre's functions should be denied or interpreted restrictively.