General Course Information

1.1 Course details

Course code: LLAW6294
Course name: International Investment: Structuring, Protecting, and Resolving Related Disputes
Programme offered under: LLM Programme
Semester: Second
Prerequisites Legal background (a degree in law or a certificate in dispute resolution), background and/or interest in other related industries (international banking, infrastructure, insurance, international business)
Credit point value: 9 credits
Cap on student numbers: 40

1.2 Course description

Since the early days of the colony, when Hong Kong first trading houses were established with Jardine & Matheson leading the way, and until contemporary Hong Kong with major listed Chinese conglomerates such as China Merchants investing in major infrastructure projects around the world, Hong Kong has been known for its market-oriented approach and for its outlook to international investment and trade.

The course is a unique offering at a post-graduate level that is tailor-made for Hong Kong international investment and trade community, whether in-house counsel, practising lawyers, managing directors, or project managers in charge of international transactions. The course is thus designed for students with a legal background (preferably a law degree) and for those students who have a background in international business transactions, international project management, and in transboundary infrastructure and banking projects.

The course is an interdisciplinary programme that unites several key legal disciplines under the general dispute resolution umbrella: public international law, investment and trade, investment structuring, investment protection, political risk insurance, WTO dispute resolution mechanism, and resolution of investment disputes.

1.3 Course teachers

Name E-mail address Office Consultation
Course convenor Olga Boltenko boltenko@hku.hk N/A By email
Course convenor Michael Tam TBA N/A By email

Learning Outcomes

2.1 Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs) for this course

CLO 1 Structure and manage international investment projects in a sustainable, cost-effective, risk-averse manner so as to ensure a lasting, sustainable investment process that preserves the investor relationship with the host States but also avoids open disputes in cases of the host States interference with foreign investment projects.

CLO 2 Identify investment protection issues in international investment projects such as nationalization, expropriation (including indirect expropriation through adverse legislation), and other forms of government interference, and offer suitable investment protection options in the face of the expropriatory acts.

CLO 3 Analyse and use, where appropriate, in the context of an international investment project that is subject to the acts of the host State that negatively affect foreign investment, alternative means of resolving investor-State disputes such as negotiation, conciliation, mediation, State agreements, political risk insurance, and other options.

CLO 4 Describe and explain the impact of international investment law and investment protection mechanisms on the global investment outlook, in particular whether investment protection mechanisms facilitate and encourage foreign direct investment within the meaning of the UN Millennium Development Goals to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, to ensure environmental sustainability, and to develop a global partnership for development.

CLO 5 Critically assess the existing investor-State and WTO dispute resolution mechanisms and be able to analyse the existing reform proposals, as well as to generate reform proposals at the level of the UNCTRAL WG III.

2.2 LLM Programme Learning Outcomes (PLOs)

Please refer to the following link: https://course.law.hku.hk/llm-plo/

2.3 Programme Learning Outcomes to be achieved in this course



3.1 Assessment Summary

Assessment task Due date Weighting Feedback method* Course learning outcomes
Take home essay 31 Mar 2024 30% 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Final in-hall exam 11 May 2024 70% 1, 3 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
*Feedback method (to be determined by course teacher)
1 A general course report to be disseminated through Moodle
2 Individual feedback to be disseminated by email / through Moodle
3 Individual review meeting upon appointment
4 Group review meeting
5 In-class verbal feedback

3.2 Assessment Detail

To be advised by course convenor(s).

3.3 Grading Criteria

Please refer to the following link: https://www.law.hku.hk/_files/law_programme_grade_descriptors.pdf

Learning Activities

4.1 Learning Activity Plan

Seminar: 3 hours / week for 12 teaching weeks
Private study time: 9.5 hours / week for 12 teaching weeks

Remarks: the normative student study load per credit unit is 25 ± 5 hours (ie. 150 ± 30 hours for a 6-credit course), which includes all learning activities and experiences within and outside of classroom, and any assessment task and examinations and associated preparations.

4.2 Details of Learning Activities

To be advised by course convenor(s).

Learning Resources

5.1 Resources

Reading materials: Reading materials are posted on Moodle
Core reading list: TBA
Recommended reading list: TBA

5.2 Links

Please refer to the following link: http://www.law.hku.hk/course/learning-resources/