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Philip Morris Brands SARL v. Uruguay
International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes
No. ARB/10/7 (2016)
Between 2008 and 2009, Uruguay (defendant) enacted two imposing restrictions on tobacco products. Under the Single Presentation Requirement (SPR), Uruguay restricted cigarette brands sold in Uruguay to sell under a single variant of cigarette. Before the adoption of the SPR, the subsidiary of Philip Morris Brands SARL (plaintiff) located in Uruguay sold six different brands with 13 variants. Under the 80/80 Regulation, Uruguay required cigarette packages to display health warnings covering at least 80 percent of the packages; the remaining 20 percent of the package was available for trademarks. Philip Morris Brands brought a challenge under a bilateral investment treaty (BIT) between Switzerland and Uruguay, alleging these two public laws deprived Philip Morris Brands of its intellectual property rights and constituted an expropriation. Philip Morris Brands argued the existence of a public health issue does not exempt Uruguay from its obligation to pay Philip Morris Brands for the loss the brand suffered due to the changes in the public health laws.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning
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