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The RSSD's Normative Basis under Public International Law

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses the reorganisation system for sovereign debt (RSSD) normative basis under public international law. According to Article 38(1) of the Statute of the International Court of Justice (ICJ Statute), the sources that shall be applied in an international law context are: international conventions, customary international law and the general principles of law recognised by civilised nations. Due to the lack of a formal legislature, international "statutory" law is notoriously thin on the ground. The more delicate an issue is, i.e. the more national sovereignty is potentially encroached upon, the fewer written treaties and conventions exist on which the sovereigns could agree. A state faced with insolvency may in principal consider the options: stop all repayments and/or to request the start of negotiations for debt rescheduling or debt relief. In both cases, customary international law could serve as a legal basis.

Keywords: Article 38(1); customary international law; ICJ Statute; international conventions; public international law; reorganisation system for sovereign debt (RSSD)



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