Download DocumentTo Search and PrintPhilip Morris Brands v. Uruguay
After passing a series of tobacco control laws, Uruguay instituted two additional regulations on tobacco packaging in 2009. The first requires graphic health warnings on 80% of the front and back of all tobacco products. The second restricts each brand to a single presentation, in order to prohibit brand variants that mislead consumers about the relative safety of the products. Philip Morris affiliates challenged the regulations in Uruguay's domestic courts, but the Supreme Court upheld them as constitutional.
In addition to the domestic constitutional challenge, Philip Morris affiliates are challenging the regulations as violations of a bilateral investment treaty between Switzerland and Uruguay. An arbitration panel, established under the International Centre on Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), decided it had jurisdiction to hear this case in July 2013 and instructed the parties to prepare substantive arguments in the case. A final decision on the merits is expected in late 2014. The decision on jurisdiction did not enter into any discussion on the merits of the case.