Call for Papers: Black Sea Maritime Security Symposium

The NATO Maritime Security Centre of Excellence (NATO MARSEC COE) will host a conference, entitled, Black Sea Maritime Security Symposium, 28–29 November 2022, at MARSEC COE (Istanbul, Türkiye). Abstracts are welcome until 30 September 2022. For more information see here and the call.

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Compilation of textual proposals for consideration at fifth session of IGC on BBNJ Agreement

Accompanying the previously reported Further Revised Draft Text of A BBNJ Agreement, the President of the Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) invited delegations to submit by 25 July 2022 textual proposals for consideration at the fifth session. The secretariat (DOLAS) was requested to produce a compilation of proposals received by that deadline (A/CONF.232/2022/5, para 12). On 1 August 2022 DOLAS released an article-by-article compilation (A/CONF.232/2022/INF.5), entitled, Textual proposals submitted by delegations by 25 July 2022, for consideration at the fifth session of the Intergovernmental conference on an international legally binding instrument under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (the Conference), in response to the invitation by the President of the Conference in her Note of 1 June 2022 (A/CONF.232/2022/5).

For more information see the documents page for the fifth substantive session.

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CJEU: Judgment in Joined Cases C-14/21 and C-15/21 (Sea Watch v Ministero delle Infrastrutture e dei Transporti)

On 1 August 2022 the Court of Justice of the European Union delivered a Judgment in the Joined Cases C-14/21 and C-15/21 (Sea Watch eV v Ministero delle Infrastrutture e dei Trasporti and Others). The case concerned the division of powers between port states and flag states under EU law (Directive 2009/16; Italian domestic transposition (Legislative Decree No 53/2011)) and international law (UNCLOS; SOLAS; SAR Convention; IMO Resolution A.1138(31) and customary international law) in the context of Italia’s port state control of a German flagged cargo ships purported to be “systematically carrying out activities relating to the search for and rescue of persons at sea”. Law of the sea scholars may wish to consult the full text of the Judgment to view the Court’s interpretations of law of the sea instruments, in particular concerning the duty to render assistance at sea, as well as the interpretation of port state control under SOLAS and IMO Resolution A.1138(31) – which may have comparative application to other IMO and ILO conventions which utilise similar provisions, or fall under similar IMO guidance via IMO Resolution A.1138(31).

The operative part of the Judgment (para 160, emphasis added) held:

1. Directive 2009/16/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on port State control, as amended by Directive (EU) 2017/2110 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 November 2017, must be interpreted as:

– applying to ships which, although classified and certified as cargo ships by the flag State, are in practice being systematically used by a humanitarian organisation for non-commercial activities relating to the search for and rescue of persons in danger or distress at sea; and

– precluding national legislation ensuring its transposition into domestic law from limiting its applicability only to ships which are used for commercial activities.

2. Article 11(b) of Directive 2009/16, as amended by Directive 2017/2110, read in conjunction with Part II of Annex I to that directive, as amended, must be interpreted as meaning that the port State may subject ships which systematically carry out search and rescue activities and which are located in one of its ports or in waters falling within its jurisdiction, having entered those waters and after all the operations relating to the transhipment or disembarking of persons to whom their respective masters have decided to render assistance have been completed, to an additional inspection if that State has established, on the basis of detailed legal and factual evidence, that there are serious indications capable of proving that there is a danger to health, safety, on-board working conditions or the environment, having regard to the conditions under which those ships operate.

3. Article 13 of Directive 2009/16, as amended by Directive 2017/2110, must be interpreted as meaning that, during more detailed inspections organised pursuant to that article, the port State has the power to take account of the fact that ships which have been classified and certified as cargo ships by the flag State are, in practice, being systematically used for activities relating to the search for and rescue of persons in danger or distress at sea in the context of a control intended to assess, on the basis of detailed legal and factual evidence, whether there is a danger to persons, property or the environment, having regard to the conditions under which those ships operate. By contrast, the port State does not have the power to demand proof that those ships hold certificates other than those issued by the flag State or that they comply with all the requirements applicable to another classification.

4. Article 19 of Directive 2009/16, as amended by Directive 2017/2110, must be interpreted as meaning that, in the event that it is established that ships which are, in practice, being systematically used for activities relating to the search for and rescue of persons in danger or distress at sea, despite having been classified and certified as cargo ships by a Member State which is the flag State, have been operated in a manner posing a danger to persons, property or the environment, the Member State which is the port State may not make the non-detention of those ships or the lifting of such a detention subject to the condition that those ships hold certificates appropriate to those activities and comply with all the corresponding requirements. By contrast, that State may impose predetermined corrective measures relating to safety, pollution prevention and on-board living and working conditions, provided that those corrective measures are justified by the presence of deficiencies which are clearly hazardous to safety, health or the environment and which make it impossible for a ship to sail under conditions capable of ensuring safety at sea. Such corrective measures must, in addition, be suitable, necessary, and proportionate to that end. Furthermore, the adoption and implementation of those measures by the port State must be the result of sincere cooperation between that State and the flag State, having due regard to the respective powers of those two States.

Sea Watch eV v Ministero delle Infrastrutture e dei Trasporti and Others, Judgment [160, emphasis added]

For more information see the CJEU Press Release No 138/22.

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Vacancies: Research Associate at IASS Potsdam

The Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) at Potsdam (Germany) has opened two positions for Research Associate. In one of the positions, the successful applicant will contribute to the project Marine Systems Approaches for Biodiversity Resilience and Ecosystem Sustainability (Marine SABRES) and Sources to Seas – Zero Pollution 2030 (SOS-ZEROPOL2030). More information here. In the other position, the successful applicant will contribute to the project Coherent and Cross-compliant Ocean Governance for Delivering the EU Green Deal for European Seas (CrossGov) and Multi-layer Governance of Marine Policies (PermaGov). More information here. Deadline for application is 29 August 2022.

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Courses: International Maritime and Transport Law

The Inter University Centre of Dubrovnik (Croatia) is hosting a course entitled International Maritime and Transport Law Transport Law De Lege Ferenda. The course takes place 5-9 September 2022. Applications are open here; more information is available here and in the course program.

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Vacancy: Research Fellow at University of Wollongong

The Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS), University of Wollongong (Australia), is currently advertising a postdoc position, Research Fellow, with Pacific Island nationals strongly encouraged to apply. Applications are welcome until 30 August 2022. For more information see here.

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Daniel Vignes Prize (4th Edition)

The International Association for the Law of the Sea (AssIDMer) welcomes applications for its Prix Daniel Vignes (4th Edition), “a prize for the best article published in a journal or a collective work, to disseminate knowledge of the international law of the sea”. The deadline for applications is 30 November 2022. The prize will be officially awarded during the VIII Ordinary Meeting of the Association in 2023. The call is available here.

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Webinar: The Competence of International Courts and Tribunals to Delimit the Continental Shelf Beyond 200 nm

The AsianSIL Law of the Sea Interest Group will host a panel discussion on the recent book ‘The Continental Shelf Delimitation Beyond 200 Nautical Miles: Towards A Common Approach to Maritime Boundary-Making’ (Cambridge University Press 2021), 31 August 2022, 16:30-18:00 (Singapore Time (SGT)), online (Zoom) (Passcode in the Flyer).

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China: Military Exercises and Training Activities Around Taiwan Island

On 2 August 2022, China provided notice that it will conduct military exercises and training activities, including live-fire drills, from 4-7 August 2022 in six defined maritime areas and their air space around Taiwan Island. Entry of vessels and aircraft into the above-mentioned sea and air space is prohibited during said period. A spokesperson for China’s Ministry of National Defense described the “targeted drills” as ‘countermeasures’ in response to the visit of US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan, while the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced other sanctions or ‘countermeasures‘ including in a maritime context.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Taiwan (R.O.C.) objected to the military exercises and training activities, including the launching of ballistic missiles into waters surrounding Taiwan Island. Japan lodged a diplomatic protest with China as reportedly the first occasion that Japan believes that Chinese ballistic missile have landed in Japan’s EEZ (5 missiles). A Foreign Ministry Spokesperson of China suggested China does not recognise Japan’s EEZ claim until maritime delimitation is completed. The G7 Foreign Ministers issued a Statement on Preserving Peace and Stability Across the Taiwan Strait (3 August 2022) calling for peaceful means, while ASEAN Foreign Ministers issued a Statement on The Cross Strait Development (3 August 2022), calling for maximum restraint, refrain from provocative action and for upholding the principles enshrined in United Nations Charter and the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia.

Notice authorized to be released by Xinhua News Agency

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Call for Abstracts: Sustainability in the Sea

MEI (University of Barcelona) and Instituto Salvador de Madariaga de Estudios Europeos (Universidade Da Coruña) will host a conference, entitled, Sostenibilidad en el Mar: Una visión desde la Barcelona Mediterránea, 19 December 2022, at University of Barcelona (Baercelona, Spain). Abstracts in Spanish, Catalan or English are welcome until 21 October 2022. For more information see here and the call.

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UNGA: The human right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment

On 28 July 2022 the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) passed a Resolution, entitled, The human right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment (161 votes in favour; China, Russian Federation, Belarus, Cambodia, Iran, Syria, Kyrgyzstan and Ethiopia abstaining). Relevant paragraphs include:

1. Recognizes the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment as a human right;

[…]

3. Affirms that the promotion of the human right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment requires the full implementation of the multilateral environmental agreements under the principles of international environmental law;

UN Doc. A/76/L.75 (26 July 2022)

For more information see the UN press release and the preceding United Nations Human Rights Council Resolution 48/13.

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Vacancy: Postdoctoral Research Fellow at University of Bergen

The University of Bergen (UiB) is currently advertising a position within the second call of the Shaping European Research Leaders for Marine Sustainability (SEAS) programme, entitled, SEAS postdoctoral research fellow in regulatory and governance challenges related to ocean sustainability. Applications are welcome until 31 October 2022. For more information see here.

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Vacancy: Ocean Policy Officer at WWF

The World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) is currently advertising for a Ocean Policy Officer, focused on “supporting the implementation of WWF Blueprint for a Sustainable European Policy Agenda, with a focus on protecting marine biodiversity”. The candidate will be based at the WWF European Policy Office (Brussels, Belgium) and applications are welcome until 15 August 2022. For more information, see here.

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Webinar: Collaborative Ocean Governance in the Bay of Bengal

The Bangladesh Centre for Ocean Law and Policy (BCOLP) will host the first episode of its inaugural webinar series, entitled, Beyond Boundaries: Collaborative Ocean Governance in the Bay of Bengal, 30 July 2022, Online. For more information see here.

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Summit: Tech, Law and Maritime Defense

TLMDS will host its first Tech, Law and Maritime Defense Summit, 11-13 October 2022, online. For more information on select speakers and to register see here.

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Call for Papers: VI Congresso do Instituto Brasileiro de Direito do Mar

The Brazilian Institute of Law of the Sea (BILOS) shall host its VI Congress of the Brazilian Institute of Law of the Sea on the 27-28 October 2022, in a hybrid format (University of Caxias do Sul (Brazil)/Online). The submission of papers is welcome until 31 August 2022.

For further information see here.

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Fiji/Solomon Islands: Maritime Boundary Agreement signed

On 11 July 2022 the Republic of Fiji and Solomon Islands signed the Agreement between the Republic of Fiji and Solomon Islands concerning their Maritime Boundary. Article 3 provides for a single delimitation line concerning both the exclusive economic zone and continental shelf entitlements of the Contracting Parties. The official press releases (2) note that the agreement is consistent with, and aligned with, the intention of all Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) Members as expressed in the previously reported 2021 Declaration on Preserving Maritime Zones in the Face of Climate Change-related Sea-Level Rise. Thus, both Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare (Solomon Islands) and Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama (Fiji) thereby declare the “permanence of their country’s respective maritime zones, irrespective of climate change-related sea-level rise and its potential impact on maritime boundaries”. 

Illustrative purposes only: Agreement between the Republic of Fiji and Solomon Islands concerning their Maritime Boundary, Annex.

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Conference: Equity Perspectives on Global Ocean Law and Governance

Universität Hamburg will host an interdisciplinary conference, entitled, Equity Perspectives on Global Ocean Law and Governance, 7 September 2022, in a hybrid format (Hamburg (Germany)/Online). For more information and registration see here.

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9th Yeosu Academy of the Law of the Sea

The Korea Maritime Institute is hosting the 9th Yeosu Academy of the Law of the Sea, 24 October – 4 November 2022, in Yeosu (Republic of Korea). Applications are welcome until 21 August 2022. Applicants should be from developing countries and those who are “engaged in maritime-related work”. No fees apply. For more information see here.

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Call for Papers: The Future of UNCLOS

The Australian National University College of Law Centre for International and Public Law (CIPL) and the Australian and New Zealand Society of International Law (ANZSIL) will host a conference, entitled, New Horizons: The Future of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, 9-10 December 2022, in a hybrid format (Canberra/online). Submission of abstracts is welcome until 8 August 2022. For more information see here.

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Dispute Concerning the Detention of Ukrainian Naval Vessels/Servicemen, Award on Preliminary Objections

The Arbitral Tribunal (UNCLOS, Annex VII) in respect of the Dispute Concerning the Detention of Ukrainian Naval Vessels and Servicemen (Ukraine v. the Russian Federation), PCA Case No. 2019-28, issued its Award on Preliminary Objections of the Russian Federation on 27 June 2022. However, consistent with Article 28(6) of the Rules of Procedure, the Parties to the Dispute were given an opportunity to designate “confidential information that they request to be redacted” and so the Award was only publicly published on 11 July 2022. The Operative part of the Award (Para. 208) unanimously concluded:

For the reasons set out above, the Arbitral Tribunal
Article 298(1)(b) Objection
a. Finds that the events of 25 November 2018 until a point in time after the Ukrainian naval vessels left anchorage area No. 471 constitute “military activities” excluded from the jurisdiction of the Arbitral Tribunal in accordance with Article 298(1)(b) of the Convention;
b. Finds that the events following the arrest of the Ukrainian naval vessels do not constitute “military activities” excluded from the jurisdiction of the Arbitral Tribunal in accordance with Article 298(1)(b) of the Convention;
c. Decides that the determination of the precise point at which the events ceased to be “military activities” within the meaning of Article 298(1)(b) of the Convention shall be ruled upon in conjunction with the merits;
Article 288(1) Objection
d. Declares that the objection that UNCLOS does not provide for an applicable immunity does not possess an exclusively preliminary character;
e. Decides that the objection that UNCLOS does not provide for an applicable immunity shall be ruled upon in conjunction with the merits;
Article 290 and 296 Objection
f. Rejects the objection that the Arbitral Tribunal has no jurisdiction over alleged breaches of the ITLOS Provisional Measures Order;
Article 279 Objection
g. Declares that the objection that Article 279 of the Convention provides no basis for the Arbitral Tribunal to claim jurisdiction as to the alleged aggravation of the dispute does not possess an exclusively preliminary character;
h. Decides that the objection that Article 279 of the Convention provides no basis for the Arbitral Tribunal to claim jurisdiction as to the alleged aggravation of the dispute shall be ruled upon in conjunction with the merits;
Article 283 Objection
i. Rejects the objection that Ukraine has not complied with Article 283 of the Convention;
Further Proceedings
j. Decides that it has jurisdiction over the dispute between the Parties, subject to the jurisdictional limitations set out above;
k. Decides that the proceedings on the merits are hereby resumed, and that the Russian Federation shall submit a Counter-Memorial no later than six months from the date of this Award;
Costs
l. Decides that the question of costs shall be ruled upon in conjunction with the merits.

Dispute Concerning the Detention of Ukrainian Naval Vessels and Servicemen (Ukraine v. the Russian Federation), Award on Preliminary Objections of the Russian Federation [208]

For further information see previous reports.

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2022 UN Ocean Conference: Lisbon Declaration

The 2022 UN Ocean Conference (The United Nations Conference to Support the Implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development), co-hosted by the Governments of Kenya and Portugal, occurred 27 June – 1 July 2022 in Lisbon (Portugal). The Conference adopted (A/CONF.230/2022/L1), without a vote, the Lisbon Declaration, entitled, Our ocean, our future, our responsibility (A/CONF.230/2022/L.2). In addition to this political declaration, many states made a host of new commitments, with “[c]lose to 700 commitments […] registered”.

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Virtual Course: Ocean Governance for Sustainable Marine Ecosystems

The Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research,  International Ocean Institute (IOI) and German Development Institute (DIE) shall host a virtual training course, entitled, Ocean Governance for Sustainable Marine Ecosystems, 19-30 September 2022. Applications are welcomed until 15 July 2022, and applications from scholars from “tropical countries” are especially welcomed. For more information see here.

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IGC President’s Further Revised Draft Text of A BBNJ Agreement

Pursuant to General Assembly Decision 76/564 (24 March 2022) a fifth session of the intergovernmental conference on an international legally binding instrument under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction will be convened 15–26 August 2022. On differences of opinion among states on whether the fifth session will be the final session to conclude an agreement see here.

The previously reported revised draft text of an agreement prepared by the President of the Conference, and previously reported textual proposals were considered at the fourth session (7-18 March 2022). The President of the Conference was requested to prepare a further revised draft text of an agreement, taking into account (1) the work of the fourth session, (2) delegation proposals in conference room papers during the fourth session, (3) proposals sent up until 31 March 2022. On 30 May 2022 the President of the Conference [Rena Lee (Singapore)] released an advanced version of the further revised draft text, entitled, Further revised draft text of an agreement under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction. Delegations are given until 25 July 2022 to submit further textual proposals for consideration at the fifth session of the conference. It is expected the President of the Conference will once again publish a compilation of proposals submitted by the deadline in advance of the opening of the fifth session. Delegations will also be able to submit proposals during the fifth session itself.

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Events: Marine Justice and Right to Science

The Observatorio para la Gobernanza Marino Costera (Colombia) is hosting a side event at the United Nations Ocean Conference 2022 entitled Marine Justice and Right to Science. The event takes place 30 June 2022, and it shall be held in English with simultaneous translation into Spanish. See program and registration.

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Webinar: Alleged Violations of Sovereign Rights and Maritime Spaces in the Caribbean Sea

The AsianSIL Law of the Sea Interest Group will host an informal discussion on the ICJ’s Alleged Violations of Sovereign Rights and Maritime Spaces in the Caribbean Sea (Nicaragua v. Colombia), Judgment of 21 April 2022, on 30 June 2022, 16:30-17:30 (Singapore Time (SGT)), online (Zoom) (Meeting ID: 907 705 7650). For further background information, see previous De Maribus reporting.

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CJEU: Case C-700/20 (London Steam-Ship Owners’ Mutual Insurance Association Limited v. Kingdom of Spain) judgment delivered

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) delivered judgment on Case C-700/20 (London Steam-Ship Owners’ Mutual Insurance Association Limited v. Kingdom of Spain). This corresponds to a request for a preliminary ruling from the High Court of Justice (England & Wales), Queen’s Bench Division (Commercial Court) (United Kingdom). The case relates to the Prestige sinking, and the CJEU found that arbitration proceedings initiated in the United Kingdom cannot block the recognition of the Spanish judgment ordering the insurer to pay compensation for the damage caused by the oil spill (see previous De Maribus report).

The CJEU held that Regulation No 44/2001 (on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial) must be interpreted as meaning that a judgment entered by a court of a Member State in the terms of an arbitral award cannot prevent, in that Member State, the recognition of a judgment given in another Member State where a judicial decision resulting in an outcome equivalent to the outcome of that award could not have been adopted by a court of the first Member State without infringing the provisions and the fundamental objectives of that regulation, in particular as regards the relative effect of an arbitration clause included in the insurance contract in question and the rules on lis pendens. In doing so, the Court ensures, in essence, that those provisions and fundamental objectives cannot be circumvented by means of arbitration proceedings followed by judicial proceedings seeking to have the terms of the arbitral award entered in a judicial decision.

The judgment (20 June 2022) may be found here and the Opinion of the Advocate General (5 May 2022) is available here. See also the CJEU press release.

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Summer School: EULoS 2022

The Jean Monnet Chair on International and European Law of the Sea (IELoS) shall host the eight edition of the EULoS Summer School, European Union and the Law of the Sea29 August – 9 September 2022, in Genoa, Italy. Applications are welcome on a rolling basis.

For more information see the EULoS website.

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Conference: Promoting Maritime Cooperation in South East Asia

The Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam (DAV), Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS), and the Australian Embassy (Viet Nam) shall host the 8th Ocean Dialogue, themed, 40th Anniversary of UNCLOS: Promoting Maritime Cooperation in Southeast Asia, 29 June 2022, in a hybrid format (Ha Noi/Online). For more information see the programme and virtual registration form.

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WTO: Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies adopted

The World Trade Organization (WTO) adopted the Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies, to be inserted in the Marrakesh Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization via an amendment (see previous De Maribus report). The decision to adopt this agreement was reached on 17 June 2022 at the WTO Twelfth Ministerial Conference. The Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies includes rules prohibiting subsidies to illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing (Article 3), to the fishing of overfished stocks (Article 4), and to fishing on the high seas outside the control of regional fisheries management organizations (Article 5). See the text of the agreement (reference WT/MIN(22)/W/22). Access the draft text and explanatory note here. Access the chair’s full statement here. See also the press release from the WTO on the “Geneva Package”.

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Croatia/Italy: EEZ delimitation agreed

The Governments of Croatia and of Italy have signed on 24 May 2022 an agreement on the delimitation of their exclusive economic zones. See press release from the Government of Croatia and press release from the Government of Italia; see also the text of the agreement, which posits that if a dispute is not settled through direct consultations or negotiations, either Party may submit the dispute to ITLOS, the ICJ or an UNCLOS Annex VII Arbitral Tribunal (see Italian version here).

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IMO: Mediterranean Sea SOx ECA approved

The 78th session of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 78) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), which convened on 6-10 June 2022, approved the designation of the Mediterranean Sea Emission Control Area for Sulphur Oxides and Particulate Matter (Med SOx ECA) under regulation 14 of Annex VI to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL). The formal designation of the Med SOx ECA will be put forward for adoption at the 79th session of MEPC due to take place on 12-16 December 2022. MEPC 78 granted its approval after considering the joint and coordinated proposal to designate the Mediterranean Sea, as a whole, as an Emission Control Area for Sulphur Oxides, which was submitted by all Mediterranean coastal States, along with all Member States of the European Union, and the European Commission. The submission of this proposal was agreed in December 2021 within the framework of the Mediterranean Action Plan of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP/MAP) at COP 22 of the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean (Barcelona Convention). The amendment could enter into force in mid-2024, with the new limit taking effect from 2025. See IMO press release and UNEP press release.

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Calls/Events: Transitions in Climate Arctic Governance

The interdisciplinary Climate Arctic Governance (CArGo) research network welcome proposals for paper and poster presentations at a conference on Transitions in Climate Arctic Governance. The event will take place in Copenhagen, Denmark, on the 16 September 2022. The conference aims to explore the different transitions within Arctic climate governance, which are necessary to address the increasing societal, climate and sustainability challenges the Arctic is facing. The conference will focus on Arctic socio-economic systems and the different legal, political, geographical and cultural regimes at play. In particular, the conference centers around the Arctic governance landscape, paying specific attention to the current geopolitical situation. Further, it will examine the topics of Arctic shipping, climate vulnerability, and natural resources in the Arctic. Deadline to submit proposals is 1 August 2022. More information is available here.

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USA: Ocean Shipping Reform Act passed by Congress

The Congress, the legislature of the federal government of the United States of America, passed on 13 June 2022 the Ocean Shipping Reform Act. This bill revises requirements governing ocean shipping to increase the authority of the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) to promote the growth and development of U.S. exports through an ocean transportation system that is competitive, efficient, and economical. For example, the bill requires the FMC to (1) investigate complaints about detention and demurrage charges (i.e., late fees) charged by common ocean carriers, (2) determine whether those charges are reasonable, and (3) order refunds for unreasonable charges. It also prohibits common ocean carriers, marine terminal operators, or ocean transportation intermediaries from unreasonably refusing cargo space when available or resorting to other unfair or unjustly discriminatory methods. See the text (reference S.3580) as approved by the U.S. Congress.

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Canada/Denmark: Hans Island/Tartupaluk maritime boundary dispute resolved

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada and the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Denmark, along with the Prime Minister of Greenland, signed on 14 June 2022 an agreement resolving outstanding boundary issues over Tartupaluk/Hans Island, the maritime boundary on the continental shelf within 200 nautical miles, including Lincoln Sea, and the continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles in Labrador Sea. The present agreement incorporates a tentative agreement from 2012 and establishes a modernized single maritime boundary within 200 nautical miles from Lincoln Sea in the north to Labrador Sea in the south – almost 3,000 km. The agreement also establishes a binding boundary line in the overlapping area of the outer continental shelf, which represents an equitable solution, consistent with article 83 of UNCLOS. See press releases from MFA Canada and MFA Denmark.

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Vacancies: internship at The Oceans Cleanup

Nonprofit engineering environmental organization The Oceans Cleanup has opened an internship position on Global Affairs. The successful candidate is expected to inter alia carry out research on particular points of environmental law related to the Ocean and/or waste management. Closing date for applications is 31 July 2022. More information is available here.

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Vacancies: Research Associate at the National University of Singapore

The Centre for International Law (CIL) at the National University of Singapore (NUS) is seeking applications for a Research Associate for a period of two years from candidates with an LLM related to public international law, law of the sea or maritime law and a demonstrable interest in oceans law and policy. The position is hosted by the Oceans Law and Policy Team. Applications close on 15 July 2022. More information is available here.

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Events: Fair and Equitable Deep Seabed Mining

Law firm Volterra Fietta shall host a seminar entitled Fair and Equitable Deep Seabed Mining. This seminar will address the various issues arising from the fair and equitable distribution of deep seabed mining’s financial and other benefits, including as they pertain to the notion of equitable distribution, the transfer of technology, the Enterprise and the Deep Seabed Mining Code. This event will take place on 16 June 2022; for more information see here.

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Events: Dispute resolution under UNCLOS

Law firm Volterra Fietta shall host a seminar entitled Dispute resolution under UNCLOS. This seminar will address various aspects of the UNCLOS dispute resolution system, namely: creativity in such dispute settlement, clarification of the law of the sea through dispute settlement, influencing dispute settlement under UNCLOS, comparisons between the different dispute settlement mechanisms under UNCLOS and how the dispute settlement system might be used to interpret UNCLOS in light of technological developments. This event will take place on 9 June 2022; for more information see here.

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Special Issue: Ocean-Based Action – The Ocean-Climate Nexus & Human Rights

The International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law is currently seeking contributions for a special issue, entitled, Ocean-Based Action: The Ocean-Climate Nexus and Human Rights, including advance publication online on a rolling basis. Abstracts are welcome until 1 August 2022, with further details and deadlines in the call for papers.

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Vacancy: Associate Legal Officer at ITLOS

The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, an international court with its seat in Hamburg, Germany, has opened the following vacancy: Associate Legal Officer (P-2). Application deadline is 28 June 2022. More information is available here.

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Calls: Implementing “Fit for 55”

The InterTran Research Group for Sustainable Law and Business, at the University of Helsinki and Turku School of Economics (Finland) welcomes proposals for extended abstracts to be presented at the upcoming international conference on Implementing Fit for 55 – The right Logistics and Transport Infrastructure for a Net Zero-Carbon Future. The Nordics at the Helm? The event is organized in collaboration with the Finnish Swedish Chamber of Commerce (FINSVE) and the Institute for Sustainability Science at the University of Helsinki (HELSUS). The conference will include presentations by invited participants (August 24) as well as by extended abstracts selected in the course of this call (August 25). Deadline for submission of abstracts is 20 June 2022. More information can be found in the call and here.

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BS MoU: Interim Guidance on Repatriation of Seafarers due to the Conflict in Ukraine published

The Secretariat of the Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control in the Black Sea Region (BS MoU), have agreed on an interim guidance on the issue of repatriation of Ukrainian seafarers, creating a common approach for implementing inspection activities in respect to the repatriation of seafarers. Inter alia, the document encourages Port State Cntrol Officers to show “flexibility” and adopt a “pragmatic approach”, all the while considering that the port State should be assured that seafarers with certificates of competency and associated documentation issued by Ukraine might face difficulties when seeking their renewal. This Interim Guidance on Repatriation of Seafarers due to the Conflict in Ukraine published 10 May 2022 by the BS MoU is available here. A press release from BS MoU dated 19 April 2022 is here.

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Filed under International Organizations, State Practice

Events: maritime boundary delimitation in practice

Law firm Volterra Fietta is organizing a seminar entitled Maritime boundary delimitation in practice. This event will address will discuss how States and private companies alike can better understand and negotiate, and if necessary, plead maritime boundary delimitation in the most sophisticated and detail-oriented ways. The event will take place on 18 May 2022. For more information, see here

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Vacancies: Postgraduate Researcher at the University of Greenwich

The University of Greenwich (U.K.), with the support of NGO Human Rights at Sea, is offering a scholarship for a postgraduate researcher to address the relationship between International Human Rights Law (IHRL), the Law of the Sea and those other bodies of law of relevance within the maritime environment. The applicant must address the application of IHRL, the monitoring of human rights standards, compliance with and enforcement of the law. Closing date for applications is 30 June 2022. More information is available here and here.

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Filed under Non-State Actors, Vacancies

CSO Alliance Launched to Support Vanuatu Initiative to Seek an ICJ Advisory Opinion on Climate Change

On 5 May 2022, the Civil Society Organisations Alliance to Support the Government of the Republic of Vanuatu’s Bid to Request a UN General Assembly Resolution Requesting an Advisory Opinion on Climate Change from the International Court of Justice (CSO Alliance) was launched. In September 2021 the Prime Minister of the Republic of Vanuatu formally announced Vanuatu’s intention to pursue a campaign to request an ICJ Advisory Opinion on the rights of current and future generations in the context of climate change. This followed the previous positive response of the leaders at the Pacific Islands Forum (50th Pacific Island Forum (August 2019) Forum Communique, para. 16), and has had the subsequent indicated support of the Heads of Government at the Thirty-Third Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) (Communique (March 2022)). Consistent with Article 65 of the Statute of the ICJ and Article 96(1) of the UN Charter, the Vanuatu campaign has signalled its intent to table a resolution proposal before the United Nations General Assembly in September 2022 which, if adopted, would request the ICJ Advisory Opinion. The “exact statement of the question upon which an opinion is required” (Article 65, ICJ Statute) does not appear to have been publicly disclosed to-date, but the most recent comments of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Vanuatu (May 2022) refers to a request “to clarify the legal obligations of states to protect human rights and the environment from climate change”.

More information is available on the websites of the Vanuatu ICJ Initiative and the Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change. On former related initiatives, see the 2011 (unsuccessful) attempt by Palau and the Republic of the Marshall Islands to have the UN General Assembly “request an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice on the responsibilities of States under international law to ensure that activities carried out under their jurisdiction or control that emit greenhouse gases do not damage other States”, including an explicit reference to Article 194 of UNCLOS.

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Book launch: Unconventional Lawmaking in the Law of the Sea

The International Law Association (Australian Branch) will host a webinar, entitled, Unconventional Lawmaking in the Law of the Sea: A conversation with contributors, 26 May 2022, online, to celebrate the release of Natalie Klein (ed.) Unconventional Lawmaking in the Law of the Sea (OUP 2022). For more information see here.

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Calls: Non-use measures for global goods and commons in international law

The Netherlands Institute for the Law of the Sea (NILOS) and the Utrecht Center for Water, Oceans and Sustainability Law (UCWOSL) of Utrecht University, in collaboration with the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ), are organizing the workshop “Non-use measures for global goods and commons in international law”, which will take place on 8-9 May 2023 in Utrecht, The Netherlands. The workshop intends to look at a selection of non-use measures (e.g., bans, moratoria, closed areas) to better understand how specific non-use measures were adopted (or not) and with what effects, and to consider the potential for success of proposals currently under discussion or consideration. Non-use measures related to four themes will be discussed: marine living resources, Antarctica, areas beyond national jurisdiction at sea, and the atmosphere and outer-space. The deadline to submit an abstract is 31 July 2022. More information is available here.

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UNGA: High-Level Commemorative Meeting on 40th Anniversary of UNCLOS

On 29 April 2022 the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly held an event to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), entitled, Informal meeting of the plenary to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (programme). The event was convened followed a request from the delegations of Denmark, Grenada, Kenya, Portugal and Singapore.

On 30 April 1982, following a request for a recorded vote by the USA, the Third United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea adopted UNCLOS by 130 votes (in favour) to 4 (against), with 17 abstentions (A/CONF.62/SR.182, paras. 26-28, subject to drafting changes and with 2 delegations not participating in the vote). UNCLOS was formally adopted and opened for signature on 10 December 1982 (A/CONF.62/122).

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Filed under International Organizations

Events: International Fisheries Law Conference 2022

The University of the Faroe Islands and the Law of the Sea Institute of Iceland are organizing a conference entitled Persistent and Emerging Challenges in International Fisheries Law. This conference will focus on challenges that emerge and those that persist in international fisheries law, including IUU fisheries related matters, institutional mechanisms in RFMOs, jurisdictional aspects in regard to fisheries disputes, substantive aspects in regard to disputes on the conservation and management of transboundary fish stocks, trade related measures with respect to fisheries resources and fisheries related matters concerning BBNJ. The event shall be held in the Faroe Islands, at Kongshøll, on 23 – 25 June 2022. Early bird registration deadline is 15 May 2022. More information is available here.

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