Monthly Archives: June 2022

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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