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In 2019, several decisions emerged where investment arbitral tribunals were called upon to choose which of two competing governments could represent the state party in the proceedings. This narrow issue reveals a surprisingly complex theoretical and practical conundrum for arbitral tribunals. The temptation to deal with it quickly and superficially is great. However, in order to effectively protect the parties’ procedural rights, the legitimacy of the decision-making process and to ensure a harmonious relationship between public international law and investment law, it is important to proceed to a full analysis of the issue. Based on the approaches and solutions elaborated in public and private international law concerning the recognition of governments and its consequences, it is possible to draw up a legally coherent and practical roadmap for arbitral tribunals faced with this particular problem.