Ms. Kehinde Folake OLAOYE

Research Student

Working toward a PhD in Laws, expected 2020

Olaoye Kehinde Folake is completing a PhD in Laws at The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) supervised by Professor Julien Chaisse and co-supervised by Professor Bryan Mercurio. Her PhD thesis examines distinct trends and dynamics of transnational investment protection law in Africa focusing on West Africa as a case study. Using empirical research, she distils some of the largely overlooked challenges of protecting and promoting foreign investment in Africa. With her thesis she aims to highlight evidence-based proposals for consolidating regional and transnational proposals for reform of international investment law in Africa. Kehinde has been educated and trained as an international lawyer in Nigeria, the United Kingdom, and Hong Kong. She studied law at the University of Ibadan before obtaining an LLM in transnational law from King’s College London. Since 2015, Kehinde has been invited to present her work at many prestigious events, including the Harvard Law School Scholars Workshop (2019), the I-Courts of Excellence Summer School on International (2018), and the Asia FDI Forum IV (2018). Her recent publications include a book chapter titled  “Goetz v. the Republic of Burundi I&II: How Foreign Investors Challenge ‘Free-Zone Regimes” published by Kluwer Law International and an article on China’s international investment treaty practice published in the highly-regarded Berkeley Business Law Journal. Kehinde is a recipient of several research grants and awards. These include 1st prize of the University of Sussex African Union Law Essay Competition and the 2019 CUHK Outstanding Student Award. For two years, she was co-chair of the Hong Kong Law Research Symposium hosted by CUHK Law. At King’s she was recipient of the Nigerian Law Scholarship. Kehinde has also being awarded a scholarship as a visiting scholar at the Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law. Kehinde also has wide practical experience. She is admitted as a solicitor and advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. Prior to her doctoral studies, she worked as a legal practitioner in Nigeria. In summer 2019, she worked as an international arbitration and dispute resolution trainee at the Hong Kong office of one of the largest law firms in the world.

Trends, Dynamics and Reform of International Investment Law in Africa, co-supervised by Professors Chin Leng LIM and Bryan MERCURIO.

  • International economic Law
  • International arbitration and dispute resolution
  • Transnational law and legal theory
  • Law and literature
  • Corporate governance
  • Legal history
  • Folake Kehinde Olaoye, ‘Goetz V The Republic of Burundi I&II : How Foreign Investors Challenge “Free-Zone Regimes” In Julien Chaisse and Jiaxiang Hu (eds), International Economic Law and the Challenges of Free Zones– Global Regulatory Issues and Trends (Kluwer Law International 2019)
  • Folake Kehinde Olaoye, To Unite Or Perish: A Case For African Union Law
  • Julien Chaisse and Folake Kehinde Olaoye, ‘The Tired Dragon: Casting Doubts On China’s Investment Treaty Practice’ (Forthcoming) 2020 The Berkley Journal of Business Law
  • “A Tale of Two Continents: A Short History of Afro-Asian Alliances in Resistance to International Investment Law”, 7th ASIL Biennial Conference, Manila, Philippines, August 2019
  • “Promoting and Protecting Investment in West Africa: Regional Competition and the AfTCA”, Beyond Goods: Trade in Services and Investment in a Climate of Trade Protectionism Trade and Investment in Services Associates (TIISA) Network, University of Adelaide, Hong Kong, August 2019
  • “OHADA and the Reform of International Investment Law in Africa” Society of International Economic Law – African International Economic Law Network Biennial Conference, Nairobi, Kenya July 2019
  • “Corruption and International Investment Law”, Institute for Global Law and Policy at Harvard Law School Scholars Workshop, Bangkok, Thailand, January 2019
  • “Investor State Disputes and Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources in Africa”, 7th Forum on International Law and African Union Law, African Union International Law Commission, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, December 2018
  • “Non-Fiction, International Law and the Trial of Dedan Kimathi”, Literature and International Law at the Edge NYU, New York, USA, December 2018
  • “Corruption, International Investment Law and Economic Crimes in Developing Countries: A Transnational” Comparative Discourse XXth IACL International Congress 2018 Younger Scholars Forum in Comparative Law Program, Fukuoka, Japan, July 2018
  • “Goetz V Burundi (1999-2012)”, Asia FDI Forum IV: Special Economic Zones, Hong Kong, March 2018
  • “Terrorism and International Investment Law in Developing Countries” 2nd Young Researchers Workshop on Terrorism and Belligerency, Minerva Centre for the Rule of Law under Extreme Conditions, Faculty of Law, University of Haifa, Israel, February 2018
  • “Historical Capitalism and International Investment Law” Young Scholars Conference, Sciences Po Law School, Paris, France, January 2018
  • “Transparency and Investor-State Dispute Resolution” UNCITRAL-UM Conference, University of Macau, December 2017
  • “Investor State Dispute Settlement in Africa-China Bilateral Investment Treaties”11th TRAPCA Annual Conference, Arusha, Tanzania, November 2017
  • “Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources and International Investment Law in Africa”’6th Annual Conference, African Society of International Law, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, October 2017
  • “International Development and Bilateral Investment Treaties”, CUHK/Kyoto Joint Workshop, Kyoto, Japan, April 2017
  • “An Empirical Analysis of Sino-African BITs”, National Taiwan University/CUHK Workshop, Taipei, Taiwan, February 2017
  • “BITs and Sustainable Development in Africa: Reform of the BIT Regime” New York Forum Africa/African Association of International Law Conference, Libreville, Gabon, August 2015
  • Member, ‘The European Union at the Crossroads of Global Order (EUCROSS), Jean Monnet Network (led by KU Leuven’s Centre for Global Governance Studies), European Union’s Erasmus+ programme, 2018-2021
  • Member, ‘Towards a China-EU Bilateral Investment Treaty– Issues, Challenges and Directions’ , General Research Fund (GRF), Hong Kong SAR Research Grants Council, 2016-2019
  • 2019 Institute for Global Law and Policy at Harvard Law School Scholars Workshop, (with scholarship) Thailand
  • Participant 2018 I Courts of Excellence Summer School on International Law: Courts and Contexts (with scholarship) Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Member, Centre for International Sustainable Development. Natural Resources Research Group
  • Moot coach, 2017 CUHK Team- Tsinghua Law School International Arbitration Moot Competition 2017 CUHK Team -Asia WTO Moot
  • Co-chair, Hong Kong Law Research Postgraduate Symposium (2017-2018)
  • Participant, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) 2    International   Investment Treaty II Mapping Project Jan-April 2015
  • Student Ambassador, Transnational Law Institute Summer Workshop King’s College London June-July 2015


  • LLM, King’s College London, United Kingdom (2015)
  • Bachelor of Laws (BL) (Bar Qualification), Nigerian Law School, Kano Campus Nigeria (2012)
  • Bachelor of Laws (LLB), University of Ibadan, Nigeria (2011)


    • Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law PhD Scholarship 2020
    • Chinese University of Hong Kong, Outstanding Students Award 2019
    • 1st Prize, University of Sussex African Union Law Essay Competition (2018)
    • 3rd Place, Tsinghua University School of Law International Arbitration Moot (2017)
    • Chinese University of Hong Kong, PhD Studentship (2016)
    • Nigerian Law Scholarship, King’s College London (2014)
    • Federal Government of Nigeria Undergraduate Scholar (2009-2011)