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Investment Promotion as Progressive Realization of Economic and Social Rights

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Faced with the reality of finite and scarce resources, and the fact that realization of most economic and social rights requires resources, can a State comply with its ICESCR obligations, particularly Article 2(1) thereof, when it engages in investment promotion activities? This paper examines the conditions under which the pursuit of foreign direct investment (FDI) can be deemed consistent with State obligation to fulfill socioeconomic rights. It is posited that investment promotion activities potentially augment the limited national income of many developing countries, thereby creating conditions that make more possible the enjoyment of socio-economic rights. This relationship is premised on the caveat that, as part of the State’s duty to protect, it should ensure the pre-existence of a set of institutions that sufficiently regulates the behavior of foreign businesses and a certain level of human capital and physical infrastructure conducive to knowledge and technology transfer.

Affiliations: 1: LL.M. Candidate (2016), Yale Law School; Juris Doctor, cum laude (2011), B.Sc. Economics, cum laude (2007), University of the Philippines; Assistant Professorial Lecturer, De La Salle University College of Law,


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