The landscape has changed, says Perera. “The threat of outright expropriation is significantly diminished in today’s environment.” Of course that’s not to say that outright expropriation can’t happen, but “creeping” expropriation is more standard fare. At MIGA, we describe “creeping” expropriation as “a series of acts that, over time, have an expropriatory effect.” Things like discriminatory tinkering with licenses and tariffs that impact an operator’s bottom line. He adds, “I think breach of contract is probably the most significant risk that investors face today and here is an area where MIGA can be very effective.”
When it comes to MIGA’s future, Perera thinks we need to focus primarily on supporting investments into the world’s most fragile and vulnerable countries – especially infrastructure investments. He’d also like to see MIGA doing more work in insuring private investments in education and health. “We are still a very young international organization in comparison to others and there is still so much scope to make a difference. But above all, we should be focused, nimble, and flexible.”
As for Perera himself, he is keeping in the game. He is writing a book on law and has been added as an Arbitrator and Conciliator from Sri Lanka (his home country) to the panel of Arbitrators and Conciliators of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes. Congratulations Srilal and thank you for your wisdom and your 21 years of dedication to MIGA.