Author Archives: N.F. Coelho

Vacancy: Legal Expert with UNDP (Mauritius)

Deadline to submit applications is 31 July 2020 with the United Nations Development Programme for the Appointment of a Legal Expert (Law of the Sea) to Support the Joint Management Area (JMA) Demonstration Project Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) Phase II Process.

The JMA Demonstration project is assisting Mauritius and Seychelles in the development and demonstration of new management approaches for extended continental shelf areas, which can provide lessons and management techniques that could be replicated both within the western Indian Ocean and other similar maritime zones globally. The JMA covers an area of 396,000 sq. km extending seaward to the east beyond the existing EEZs of both coastal States and is the largest joint maritime zone in the world. More information is available here (Reference Number 67599).

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Vacancy: Climate & Ocean Research Fellow at University of California, Berkeley

The Center for Law, Energy & the Environment (CLEE) at University of California, Berkeley School of Law accepts applications for the position of Assistant/Associate Specialist on Climate & Ocean Research. The Climate & Ocean Law & Policy Fellow will work on domestic and international law and policy issues, roughly splitting their time between projects within the Climate Program and projects within the Ocean Program. Specific research areas will likely include: (1) on the climate side, work on California climate programs related to renewable energy, energy efficiency, energy storage and zero-emission transportation; (2) on the ocean side, domestic offshore renewable energy development, international ocean law issues including deep sea mining and marine scientific research; and (3) other potential energy and environmental issues.

Final date for applications is 27 July 2020, but next review date is 20 July 2020 to ensure full consideration by the committee. More information here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

USA: Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument fisheries restored

The President of the United States of America issued Proclamation on Modifying The Northeast Canyons And Seamounts Marine National Monument (5 June 2020). This proclamation restores commercial fishing that is carried out in accordance with Magnuson-Stevens and other applicable laws, regulations, and requirements. It reverses restrictions on commercial fishing set forth in Proclamation 9496, which prohibited commercial fishing, with a phase-out period for American lobster and red crab fisheries, within the monument’s boundaries.

In Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association v. Ross, the United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit (349 F.Supp.3d 48 (2018)), dismissed a complaint from several commercial-fishing associations that challenged the creation of the Monument (5 October 2018). The United States District Court, District of Columbia (9945 F.3d 535 (2019)) upheld that ruling (27 December 2019).

The new Proclamation may be found here.

750xNortheast_Canyons_and_Seamounts_Marine_National_Monument_MAP.jpg
Map of Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument. Source: NOAA.gov

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

Vacancy: marine policy officer at WWF

Closing date for applications is 8 July 2020 with World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) for a marine policy officer vacancy based in Brussels (Belgium). The officer will ensure that there is a coordinated approach across the WWF European network to effectively influence and implement EU marine policies including the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), Maritime Spatial Planning Directive (MSP) Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), and International Ocean Governance. Further information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Non-State Actors, Vacancies

Vacancy: assistant professorship at Wagenigen University

Closing date for applications is 12 July 2020 with Wageningen University & Research for an assistant professorship in Governance of Coastal Resilience. The position requires adapting to existing courses taught by the Environmental Policy Group in the Masters of Aquaculture and Marine Resources Management, Environmental Sciences, and Tourism, Society & Environment. Research activities should contribute to social scientific debates around policy and management of coastal environments and how they contribute to resilient coastal communities and industries under conditions of environmental globalisation. Further information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

France: continental shelf extension authorized by the CLCS

The Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) has published recommendations authorizing France to extend its continental shelf off the islands of La Réunion and Saint-Paul and Amsterdam. According to these recommendations, published on 10 June 2020, France may extend its continental shelf off the islands of La Réunion and Saint-Paul and Amsterdam (French Southern and Antarctic Lands). France will thus expand its submarine domain by 151,323 km2 (58,121 km2 off La Réunion and 93,202 km2 off Saint-Paul and Amsterdam). Further information is available here (in French).

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

Webinar: Building Ambition for a new High Seas Treaty

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is hosting a webinar entitled Building Ambition for a new High Seas Treaty: Marine Genetic Resources. This is the first in a four part IUCN Webinar Series preparing for the Fourth Intergovernmental Conference for an international legally binding agreement on marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction (IGC4).

This event is set to happen on 5 June 2020. Registration is possible here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Philippines: Chinese jurisdiction over islands contested

The Department of Foreign Affairs of the Philippines issued a statement (30 April 2020) contesting the so-called districts of “Nansha” and “Xisha” under the supposed administrative jurisdiction of its self-declared “Sansha City” announced on 18 April 2020 by the People’s Republic of China. According to this announcement by China, “the Xisha District of Sansha City has jurisdiction over the islands and reefs of the Xisha Islands and its sea areas, and is in charge of the islands and reefs of the Zhongsha Islands and its sea areas”. The statement from the Philippines is available here.

The United States of America also issued a statement (22 April 2020) describing China’s announcement as a “new unilateral announcement of administrative districts over disputed islands and maritime areas in the South China Sea”.

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

Vacancy: PhD position at Université d’Angers

Closing date for applications is 17 June 2020 with the Université d’Angers (France) for a PhD position on the topic of prevention and resolution of conflicts of use in the law of the sea (La prévention et la résolution des conflits d’usage en droit de la mer). The position is based at the Centre Jean Bodin and the researcher is expected to join the ZOMAD (observatoire des zones maritimes disputées) research group.

Further information is available here (English version here).

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Webinar: Plastic as a Key to Addressing Ocean Pollution

The High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy (Ocean Panel) is hosting a webinar entitled Plastic as a Key to Addressing Ocean Pollution. The event is set to happen 27 May 2020 at 09:00 AM (BST). This event is part of the series of webinars featuring new scientific ‘Blue Papers’.

Registration and further information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Symposium: Plastics in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic Region

The Government of Iceland in collaboration with the Nordic Council of Ministers is hosting the International Symposium on Plastics in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic Region, in connection with the Icelandic Chairmanship of the Arctic Council. The event takes place on September 28-30 2020 in Reykjavík (Iceland). The programme is available here. Registration is open until the Symposum date.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Webinar: How to arrest a ship

Danish law firm IUNO is hosting a webinar on 3 June 2020 entitled How to Arrest a Ship. The webinar will focus on the particular rules of maritime laws, how they are applied, and alternatives to arresting a ship.

Registration form and further information is here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Vacancy: PhD position at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Closing date for applications is 10 July 2020 with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) for a PhD position on the New Arctic and Digital Ocean (NADO), an initiative associated with NTNU Oceans. The PhD candidate will collaborate on research that frames the “New Arctic”; one angle of research presented is “the geopolitics of polar militarism and international law”. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

UK: Fisheries Framework Agreement draft negotiating document published

The United Kingdom published (April 2020) a Draft Working Text for a Fisheries Framework Agreement between the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the European Union. The preamble of this document states that:

The UK proposal reflects the fact that, at the end of 2020, the UK will be an independent coastal State and will no longer be bound by the Common Fisheries Policy, and that the current arrangements on quota-sharing will end. In line with the UK’s commitment to best available science, future fishing opportunities should be based on the principle of zonal attachment. The UK proposal is based on relevant international precedents, including the EU’s separate fisheries agreements with other coastal states. Through this agreement, and the annual negotiations it provides for, the UK would fulfil its obligations under UNCLOS to cooperate with the EU on the sustainable management of shared stocks.

The document calls for “annual negotiations on fishing opportunities and access” (Article 2). It proposes that any vessels granted access to fish in the relevant waters must “obtain an authorisation and a licence” (Article 3.1) before commencing fishing operations and that “each Party shall manage its own fisheries independently and may take such measures in its relevant waters as it considers appropriate to ensure the rational and sustainable management of fisheries” (Article 4.1). The document is available here.

A Draft text of the Agreement on the New Partnership with the United Kingdom, which includes a chapter on fisheries, was published (18 March 2020) by the European Union. It is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under International Organizations, State Practice

Survey: the BBNJ during the COVID-19 crisis

The MARIPOLDATA research group has launched a survey about the postponement of the negotiations towards a new treaty for the protection and sustainable use of marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ). The group seeks to learn about perceptions on the potential effects of the COVID-19 crisis on the BBNJ Treaty and, also, how this situation has changed people’s interest and involvement in the process. The survey is open until 17 May 2020 and can be found here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Surveys

CJEU: Case C-641/18 (LG and Others v Rina SpA and Ente Registro Italiano Navale) judgement delivered

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) delivered judgment on Case C-641/18 (LG and Others v Rina SpA and Ente Registro Italiano Navale) on 7 May 2020. It was found that the victims of the sinking of a vessel, which sailed under the flag of Panama, may bring an action for damages before the Italian courts against the Italian organisations which classified and certified that vessel. Those organisations could rely on immunity from jurisdiction only in so far as their activities constituted an expression of the public powers of the Panamanian State.

The CJEU held, first, that an action for damages, brought against private-law corporations engaged in the classification and certification of ships on behalf of and upon delegation from a third State, falls within the concept of ‘civil and commercial matters’, within the meaning of Article 1(1) of Regulation No 44/2001 (‘the Brussels I Regulation’) and, therefore, within the scope of that regulation, provided that that classification and certification activity is not exercised under public powers, within the meaning of EU law. Secondly, the CJEU held that the principle of customary international law concerning immunity from jurisdiction does not preclude the national court seised from exercising the jurisdiction provided for by that regulation in a dispute relating to such an action, where that court finds that such corporations have not had recourse to public powers within the meaning of international law.

The press release of the judgement is available here. The Opinion of the Advocate General Szpunar, delivered in January 2020, is available here. The judgement is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisprudence

Vacancy: postdoctoral research positions at the University of East Finland

Deadline for applications is 5 June 2020 with the University of Eastern Finland (UEF) for a postdoctoral research position on adaptive governance of freshwaters. As climate change drives changing hydrological conditions and ecosystem change, research is needed to establish the key changes needed in current legal and governance arrangements (e.g. under the EU Water Framework Directive). Information on this position is available here.

Other postdoctoral research positions opened at the UEF with a possible legal angle (on recreational use/tourism relating to aquatic environments and on the effects of microplastics on aquatic ecosystems) are available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Vacancy: Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Washington

Closing date for applications is 1 June 2020 with the University of Washington (USA) for a Postdoctoral Research Scholarship about Equity and Justice in the ‘Blue Economy’. The position shall be based at the Ocean Nexus Center, EarthLab, as part of a new research program on ocean equity. The scholar is expected to work within a new team of transdisciplinary scholars investigating the relationships between people and the sea, with an explicit aim to address equity and justice issues in the emergent ‘blue economy’ agenda. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Online conference: Virtual Ocean Dialogues

The World Economic Forum, in collaboration with the World Resources Institute, is hosting a  global online conference for ocean action, the Virtual Ocean Dialogues. The event is scheduled to take place on 1-5 June 2020 as part of the Friends of Ocean Action. Priority topics to be covered include enabling a resilient ocean, how to stem the tide of marine pollution, sustainable food from the ocean, ocean data and science, marine protection and conservation of biodiversity, sustainably and equitably managing the high seas, ocean risk and more. Further information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Vacancy: PhD fellowship at the Arctic University of Norway

Closing date for applications is 3 May 2020 for a doctoral fellowship at the Arctic University of Norway (Tromsø). This fellowship is part of the interdisciplinary project Novel Marine Resources for Food Security and Food Safety (SECURE). The objective of the project is to develop knowledge enabling sustainable food security and safety by a multidisciplinary approach based on novel marine low trophic level resources, cardiometabolic health and legal framework. The position is for a period of four years. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Call for papers: Iranian Review for Law of the Sea and Maritime Policy

The Iranian Review for Law of the Sea and Maritime Policy has launched a call for papers. The journal is published bianually in English by the Imam Khomeini Maritime Sciences University and features articles in French in every volume. A wide range of topics within the wider Law of the Sea, Maritime Policy and Maritime Law and Regulation fields is welcome.

More information is available in the call.

Leave a comment

Filed under Calls

Course: Ocean Governance for Africa

Deadline for applications to the Course in Ocean Governance for Africa is 19 April 2020 with the International Ocean Institute. The course is intended for mid-career professionals, educators, researchers and civil society members that have coastal and marine related responsibilities, functions or interests, preferably from countries within the African region. The course outline includes the study of the governance framework, governance tools and governance in action in specific sectors. The course will be delivered in Cape Town (South Africa) between 7 September 2020 and 2 October 2020. The brochure and further information is available here.

2 Comments

Filed under Courses

Call for papers: Conflits d’usages en mer et droit de l’Union européenne

Deadline for submission of papers (in French) is 1 June 2020 with the Centre d’Études et de Recherches Internationales et Communautaires (CERIC) and the Institut du droit économique de la mer (INDEMER) to a colloquium entitled Conflits d’usages en mer et droit de l’Union européenne (Conflicting uses of the sea and EU law). The event is set to happen 19-20 November 2020 at Aix-Marseille Université (France). More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Calls, Events

Vacancy: PhD scholarship at UNSW Camberra

Closing date for applications is 20 March 2020 with the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Canberra (Australia) for a PhD scholarship on international law and technological change in relation to the use of Marine Autonomous Vehicles in the deep seabed mining regime being developed at the International Seabed Authority. The PhD research will form part of the Australian Research Council funded project “Improving International Law Regulation of Maritime Autonomous Vessels” (DP200102091). The candidate is expected to work with the Maritime Security Research Group. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Course: Multilateral Environmental Agreements

Application deadline is 17 April 2020 with the University of Eastern Finland for the Course on Multilateral Environmental Agreements. This two-week course on international environmental law-making and diplomacy features the study of the International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling (ICRW) among other instruments mentioned in the course programme. The course will take place 17-27 August 2020 at Joensuu, Finland, and is organized together with the the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).  More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Courses

Vacancy: PhD scholarships at the World Maritime University

Closing date for applications is 29 March 2020 for PhD scholarships at the World Maritime University on Marine Debris and Sargassum Threats in the Eastern Caribbean Region (“Closing the Circle” Programme). The research will focus on three interconnected, holistic and multidisciplinary research themes: 1) Science and technology; 2) Blue / Green Economics; and 3) Societal awareness. Adaptive marine spatial planning is considered as a cross-cutting theme for all of the research themes. The terms of reference are available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Call for abstracts: Power Politics of Nature

Deadline for submission of abstracts is 16 March 2020 with the European International Studies Association (EISA) for the 2020 Pan-European International Studies Conference. This year’s edition overarching theme is Power Politics of Nature, which features a thematic session entitled Politics of Ocean and Polar Regions. The session shall include panels on EU maritime security and governance, on the politics of global ocean waterways, on membership, authority and change in ocean governance institutions, and on the governance on regional marine ecosystems. The Conference takes place on 16-19 September 2020, at Msida, University of Malta. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Calls, Events

Vacancy: PhD fellowships at the Arctic University of Norway

Closing date for applications is 1 April 2020 for two doctoral fellowships at the Norwegian Centre for the Law of the Sea (NCLOS), Arctic University of Norway (Tromsø). Position #1 focuses on sovereignty and common interests: the candidate is expected to analyse how sovereignty and other derived concepts both obstruct and provide solutions to the challenges to the oceans and their governance. Position #2 focuses on the legal framework for oceans commons: the candidate is expected to discuss whether the Common Heritage of Mankind and freedoms of the high seas provide adequate basis for protecting the marine environment and whether they provide for equity and justice. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Vacancy: postdoctoral fellowships at Stockholm University

Closing date for applications is 29 February 2020 for two postdoctoral fellowships in ocean governance at the Stockholm Resilience Centre (SRC), Stockholm University (Sweden). The candidates are expected to contribute to two ongoing projects at the SRC: the Seafood Business for Ocean Stewardship initiative (SeaBOS) and the Ocean Risk and Resilience Action Alliance (ORRAA). The positions are for two years, full time. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Vacancy: PhD research fellowship at the University of Oslo

Closing date for applications is 18 March 2020 for a PhD Research Fellowship at the Scandinavian Institute of Maritime Law, University of Oslo (Norway). The project designated for the PhD Research Fellow will be a part of and contribute towards the goals of the larger project Norwegian CCS Research Center (NCCS). The PhD Research Fellow will participate in a work package that aims to investigate legal issues related to the Carbon Capture and Storage value chain. The position is for three years, full time. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

WTO: Japan initiates second complaint on Korean shipbuilding

Japan has initiated a second World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute complaint regarding Korean support for shipbuilders. Japan has requested WTO dispute consultations with Korea regarding alleged subsidies provided by the Korean government to its shipbuilding industry. The request is the second filed by Japan concerning support measures for Korea’s shipbuilders.  Japan initiated its first WTO complaint in November 2018.

Japan claims the challenged measures, which include funds, loans, guarantees, insurance and other financing, are inconsistent with the WTO’s Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (SCM Agreement) and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994. Japan’s request was circulated to WTO members on 10 February 2020. This request for consultations is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under International Organizations

ITLOS – Nippon Foundation Capacity Building and Training Programme 2020-2021

The ITLOS-Nippon Foundation Capacity-Building and Training Programme on Dispute Settlement under UNCLOSJuly 2020 – March 2021, to be held at the seat of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (Hamburg, Germany), is welcoming applications until 3 April 2020.

For more information see the flyer and website.

Leave a comment

Filed under Courses

IFLOS Summer Academy 2020

The 14th session of the IFLOS Summer Academy ‘Promoting Ocean Governance and Peaceful Settlement of Disputes’ shall be held from 9 August to 4 September 2020. The event takes place at the seat of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), in Hamburg (Germany).

Applicants should hold a Master’s degree (LL.M. or equivalent) and have advanced knowledge of public international law, the law of the sea or maritime law. The deadline for the reception of applications is 10 April 2020 (postal). For more information, see here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Courses

Workshop: Utilization of genetic resources and the Nagoya Protocol

The UVIGO Marine Research Centre (CIM-UVIGO) is holding a workshop entitled: Utilization of genetic resources and the Nagoya Protocol: legal framework and practical cases of application in the marine field (Utilización de recursos genéticos y Protocolo de Nagoya: marco legal y casos prácticos de aplicación en el ámbito marino). This workshop is part of the EBB project (European Blue Biobank), aimed at facilitating access to marine biological resources. The event is set to happen on 14 February 2020, in Vigo (Spain). Registration forms and the program of the event (in Spanish) can be found here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Vacancy: research position at the University of Tasmania

The University of Tasmania (Australia) accepts expressions of interest and applications for the project Evaluation of governance and economic measures to prevent and deter Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated fishing. This interdisciplinary project will evaluate the effectiveness of economic and policy tools that governments and international organisations utilise to deter and prevent IUU fishing in national jurisdictions and on the high seas. It will examine issues that exacerbate the IUU fishing problem such as vessels flying flags of convenience, the transshipment of catches, and links to organised transnational criminal activities.

Closing date is 31 March 2020. The vacancy can be found here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Call for abstracts: Sustainable Ocean Project

The Sustainable Ocean Project is holding its final conference on 3-4 September 2020 in Utrecht (the Netherlands). This project has been dealing with the following overarching research question since 2015: how can the law contribute to the sustainable use of the oceans and strike a balance between competing interests at sea? 

The conference will be structured around four interrelated themes:

  1. Due diligence as obligation and/or balancing standard;
  2. Balancing principles in international law interpretation;
  3. The role of regionalism in the accommodation of multiple interests;
  4. The role of state consent and the participation of other actors in international law-making and law implementation.

Abstracts are accepted until 30 March 2020. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Calls

UK/USA: agreement concerning the Shipwrecked Vessel RMS Titanic enters into force

The agreement concerning the Shipwrecked Vessel RMS Titanic signed by the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States of America (USA) has entered into force. This treaty was signed in 2003 by the United Kingdom, but was only accepted by the United States of America on 18 November 2019. Among other obligations, the treaty posits that

Each Party shall take the necessary measures, in respect of its nationals and vessels flying its flag, to regulate through a system of project authorizations:

(a) entry into the hull sections of RMS Titanic so that they, other artifacts and any human remains are not disturbed; and
(b) activities aimed at the artifacts from RMS Titanic found outside the hull of the wreck so that all such activities are, to the maximum extent practicable, conducted in accordance with the Rules.

This treaty strengthens the basic level of protection for the wreck afforded by UNESCO since 2012. Lying in international waters, the wreck was previously not protected by explicit legislation. The text of the treaty can be found here. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Treaties

Morocco: maritime delimitation bills approved

The Parliament of Morocco (Commission des Affaires étrangères, de la défense nationale, des affaires islamiques et des Marocains résidant à l’étranger à la Chambre des représentants) has approved (16 December 2019) two bills (projets de loi) concerning the delimitation of maritime zones. The projet de loi n° 37.17 alters the previous legislation on the territorial waters, updating existing baselines with more recently surveyed data; the projet de loi n° 38.17 alters previous legislation concerning the exclusive economic zone and the continental shelf. Both bills were first presented in 2017 and they apply to the waters adjacent to the Southern Provinces of Morocco, located within a Non-Self Governing Territory listed under Chapter XI of the Charter of the United Nations as “Western Sahara“.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Morocco has stated that these initiatives “do not mean the unavailability of Morocco for a solution to any possible conflict with its neighbours Spain and Mauritania”. This statement is available here (in French). In response, the Government of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic published a statement saying that the “unilateral Moroccan act to claim Western Sahara maritime zones is null and void”. This statement is available here.

*** Update 2020/04/07: Bills 37.17 and 38.17 have been turned into laws. The laws were published in the Official Bulletin on 30 March 2020. ***

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

PCA: The Duzgit Integrity Arbitration (Malta v. São Tomé and Príncipe) Award on Reparation delivered

The Tribunal constituted under Annex VII to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea in the matter of the Duzgit Integrity Arbitration has issued its final Award on Reparation in respect of the dispute between Malta and São Tomé e Príncipe (18 December 2019). These proceedings concerned the arrest by São Tomé of a Maltese flagged vessel – the Duzgit Integrity – when it attempted to undertake a ship-to-ship (“STS”) cargo transfer in São Tomé’s archipelagic waters, and the subsequent measures taken by São Tomé in relation to the vessel, its master, cargo, owner and charterer.

This Final Award follows a previous Award delivered by the PCA (see De Maribus report here). Following the issuance of the Tribunal’s 5 September 2016 Award, the proceedings were temporarily suspended while the Parties pursued settlement negotiations, which were ultimately unsuccessful. In its present Award on Reparation, the Tribunal scrutinizes Malta’s claim for reparation and orders São Tomé to pay compensation in respect of certain of Malta’s heads of claim, in particular by addressing the following:

  • Whether Malta has sufficiently substantiated its claims and established causation between its loss and São Tomé’s unlawful conduct;
  • Whether the settlement agreement mitigates any of the damages suffered by DS tankers;
  • Whether the acts and omissions of the Duzgit integrity, its master, owner and charterer mitigate any of the damages claimed by Malta.

More information about this case can be found here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisprudence

CJEU: Advocate General in Slovenia v Croatia (Case C-457/18) declines jurisdiction

Advocate General Priit Pikamäe proposes the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) to declare that it does not have jurisdiction to hear an action brought by Slovenia, who submits that Croatia is preventing it from fully exercising its sovereignty throughout its maritime territory. The Advocate General is of the view that the delimitation of national territory does not fall within the sphere of competence of the European Union or of the CJEU (CJEU press release of 11 December 2019).

Both parties submitted a territorial and maritime boundary dispute to the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), who issued a Final Award determining the creation of a “Junction Area” and setting the terms of the special regime to apply therein. The PCA emphasized that this special regime is intended to guarantee both the integrity of Croatia’s territorial sea and Slovenia’s freedoms of communication between its territory and the high seas (PCA press release of 29 June 2017). Croatia decided to withdraw from the 2009 Arbitration Agreement in 29 July 2015 and later stated that this award “does not in any way bind Croatia and Croatia shall not implement it” (Croatia Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs press release of 29 June 2017).

In its action brought to the CJEU (2018/C 399/27) on 13 July 2018, Slovenia argues that Croatia “unilaterally refuses to fulfil its obligations under the arbitration award”, namely in “denying Slovenian fishing vessels free access to the marine waters which the arbitration award of 2017 has defined as Slovene, and, a fortiori, free access to Croatian waters falling within the scope of the mutual access regime”.

More information on Case C-457/18 shall be made available here.

Capture

The “Junction Area”, as determined by the PCA in 2017. Source: PCA Case No. 2012-04, at page 347

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisprudence

ICC: Final Decision on the “Situation on the Registered Vessels of Comoros, Greece and Cambodia” re-filed

The International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor has re-filed the Final Decision (2 December 2019) concerning the “Article 53(1) Report” (ICC-01/13-6-AnxA), as revised and refiled, on the Situation on the Registered Vessels Of The Union Of The Comoros, The Hellenic Republic, And The Kingdom Of Cambodia (ICC-01/13).

The Prosecutor maintains her view that the preliminary examination of this situation must be closed and argues that “there remains no reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation, since there is no reasonable basis to conclude that any potential case arising from the situation would be of sufficient gravity to be admissible before the Court”. This decision was taken without prejudice to her conclusion that, “on the information made available, there is a reasonable basis to believe that war crimes were committed by members of the Israel Defence Forces (“IDF”) in the boarding of the Mavi Marmara, and its aftermath, resulting in 10 fatalities, the wounding of as many as 55 people, and outrages upon the personal dignity of potentially many others during the voyage to Ashdod”.

Although Israel is not a State Party, according to article 12(2)(a) of the Rome Statute, the ICC can exercise its jurisdiction in relation to the conduct of non-Party State nationals alleged to have committed Rome Statute crimes on the territory of, or on vessels and aircraft registered in, an ICC State Party. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Jurisprudence

Iceland: use of heavy fuel oil in the territorial sea banned

The Government of Iceland (Minister for the Environment and Natural Resources) has issued a regulation tightening fuel requirements for ships, which effectively bans the use of heavy fuel oil in the territorial sea of Iceland. The change is brought about by an amendment to Iceland’s regulation on sulphur content of certain liquid fuels (reglu­gerð nr. 124/​2015). The permissible sulphur content of marine fuels used in the territorial sea and internal waters of Iceland is lowered from 3.5% down to 0.1%. In addition, the permissible sulphur content of marine fuels is lowered down to 0.5% within the Icelandic Pollution Prevention Zone outside of the territorial sea. More information here.

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

Vacancy: PhD scholarship at UNSW Sydney

The UNSW Sydney is offering a PhD scholarship for research in the Law of the Sea. This scholarship is available to participate in a project addressing the enhancement of maritime security through informal lawmaking. Preference will be given to proposals that have a multilateral or regional perspective rather than focusing on the law and policy of one particular country. Multidisciplinary perspectives on the issues being assessed are encouraged. Deadline for applications is 4 February 2020. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Turkey/Libya: MoU on EEZ delimitation signed

Turkey and Libya have signed (27 November 2019) a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the delimitation of the maritime jurisdiction areas in the Mediterranean.

The MFA of Greece considered (28 November 2019) that “the signing by Turkey and Libya of a memorandum of understanding cannot violate the sovereign rights of third countries” and that “such an action would be a flagrant violation of the International Law of the Sea and would produce no legal effect”. The Minister also noted that “between the two countries there is the large geographical mass of Crete”.

In response, the MFA of Turkey stated (1 December 2019) that “islands cannot have a cut-off effect on the coastal projection of Turkey” and that “the islands which lie on the wrong side of the median line between two mainlands cannot create maritime jurisdiction areas beyond their territorial waters and that the length and direction of the coasts should be taken into account in delineating maritime jurisdiction areas”.

Turkey had submitted earlier in the month (13 November 2019) to the UN a list of geographical coordinates, concerning the outer limits of Turkey’s continental shelf in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, where Turkey exercises ipso facto and ab initio exclusive sovereign rights and jurisdiction stemming from international law (A/74/550).

Turkey has not signed the UNCLOS and has opposed the new international legal regime of islands during UNCLOS III in two occasions (160th meeting and 189th meeting).

Capture.PNG

Base points for Turkey-Libya Continental Shelf/EEZ Coordinates List. Source: T.C. Resmi Gazete, 6 December 2019.

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

Workshop: Judicial Settlement under UNCLOS

Le Club de Droit International and the University of Angers, in collaboration with the Embassy of the Russian Federation in The Netherlands, are hosting a discussion on Judicial Settlement under UNCLOS: An insider’s view of ITLOS. The event takes place on 9 December 2019 at the Hague (The Netherlands). More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Events

Daniel Vignes prize (3rd edition)

The International Association for the Law of the Sea (AssIDMer) welcomes applications for its Prix Daniel Vignes (3rd 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 15 May 2020. The prize will be officially awarded during the VIII Ordinary Meeting of the Association in 2020. The call is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Competitions

Vacancy: post-doctoral position at Gothenburg University

The Department of Law of the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg is announcing a post-doctoral position in Ocean Governance Law. For the purpose of this position ocean governance is widely construed, so as to include the regulation of human activities pertaining to or directly affecting the utilisation and long-term management of the oceans and their resources. Examples of relevant issue areas are social, economic and ecological aspects of shipping, utilisation and preservation of marine living resources, management of ecosystems under change, and regulatory challenges relating to the introduction of artificial intelligence in a maritime context. Closing date is 20 November 2019. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Vacancies

Moot Court: Telders 2020

The 43rd Edition of the Telders International Law Moot Court Competition will be held from Thursday 4 June until Saturday 6 June 2020. This year’s case Questions relating to Sovereignty in the Lamma Sea (Quntong v. Discovia) involves issues on the definition of island and rock under international law, as well as the conduct of private vessels and fishing activities on the EEZ. This competition is open to all European university students who are currently enrolled in their bachelors or masters phase of their study. Deadline for registration is 11 November 2019. More information is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Competitions

India: ban on single use plastic on board ships imposed

The Government of India (Directorate General of Shipping, Mumbai) has issued an Order on the prohibition of use of single use plastics on board ships. This ban is applicable to all Indian ships and to foreign ships in port or within Indian waters. The enforcement shall be undertaken on the basis of flag and port state capacity surveys, inspections and audits.

Surveyors carrying out port state inspection of foreign flag vessels are expected to ensure that single use plastics are not in use and are kept locked in a store during their stay in Indian ports and on their passage through the territorial waters of India. A foreign ship intending to enter an Indian port is required to make a log entry identifying “Single Use Plastic Items” on board the ship. No single use plastic items are to be discharged to port reception facilities at an Indian port. The Order further clarifies that no detention of foreign ships is to be enforced.

DGS Order No. 05 (16 October 2019) is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under State Practice

EMSA: guidance on ship inspections by port States published

The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) has published a new guidance on inspections of ships by the Port States in accordance with Regulation 1257/2013 on Ship Recycling (SRR). The aim of this EMSA guidance is to assist the Member States and their designated inspectors in their efforts to fulfil the requirements of SRR and Port State Control (PSC) Directive, in relation to inspections covering the respective requirements of these two instruments. It is a reference document that provides both technical information and procedural guidance thus contributing to harmonised implementation and enforcement of the provisions of the SRR and the PSC Directive. The Guidance is available here.

Leave a comment

Filed under International Organizations