Argentina made headlines last week with its plan to nationalize oil company YPF. The decision to expropriate 51% of the shares in YPF hydrocarbons corporation–eliminating the controlling stake of Spanish firm Repsol–was announced on 16 April, and was accompanied by a takeover of the company’s office by Argentine authorities.
In response, Repsol has announced its intent to pursue an expropriation claim, and Spain has taken retaliatory measures, seeking to restrict imports of biodiesel fuel from Argentina.
The EU has made clear its displeasure with Argentina and its intent to support Spain. But given that this is an investment case that legally falls primarily under the Spain-Argentina bilateral investment treaty (BIT), what role can the EU play?