Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 27

UNCLO

S
DELIMITATION OF MARITIME BOUNDARIES

DELIMITATION OF MARITIME
BOUNDARIES
Regarding the delimitation of the territorial sea
between States with opposite or adjacent coasts,
neither of them is entitled to extend its territorial sea
beyond the median line every point of which is
equidistant from the nearest points on the baselines
of each of them, unless they agree to do so, or if
historic title or other special circumstances make it
necessary to delimit the territorial seas in other ways.

DELIMITATION OF MARITIME
BOUNDARIES
The delimitation of the EEZ and continental shelf
between States with opposite or adjacent coasts
must be done by agreement on the basis of
international law. Pending this they may make
provisional arrangements of a practical nature,
and they must not jeopardize or hamper the
reaching of a final agreement. If no agreement
can be reached within a reasonable period of time,
the parties shall resort to peaceful means of dispute
settlement.

In the North Sea Continental Shelf Cases it was held that the
equidistance method did not represent general international law.
since then, certain equitable principles have been recognized as
guidelines for delimitation:

1. Delimitation shall be effected by agreement on the basis of


international law.
2. The principle of non-encroachment by one party on the
natural prolongation of the other.
3. Prevention any cut off of the sea ward projection of the states
concerned.
4. Delimitation is to be effected by applying equitable criteria
and by using practical methods capable of ensuring, with
regard to the geographical configuration of the area and other
relevant circumstances, an equitable result.
5. There is a presumption that the equitable solution is an equal
division of the overlapping areas of the continental shelves of

The application of equitable principles makes


reference to relevant circumstances, such as:
1. General configuration of the coasts of the parties
2. Where there is a geographical situation of quasiequality between a number of states, it is necessary
to abate effects of an incidental special feature which
might result in unjustified, different treatment. ( to
avoid the effects of a concave coast, the location of
islands of one state near the other, and the eccentric
alignment of small islands lying off a peninsula).
3. The geological structure of the sea-bed and its
geomorphology (or surface features)

The application of equitable principles makes


reference to relevant circumstances, such as:
6. The conduct of the parties, such as the de facto line
produced by the pattern of grants of petroleum
concessions in the disputed area.
7. The incidence of natural resources (oil and natural
gas) in the disputed area.
8. The principle of equitable access to the natural
resources of the disputed area.
9. Defense and security interests of the disputing
states.
10.Their navigational interests.

DELIMITATION OF MARITIME
BOUNDARIES
Art. 6 of the Continental Shelf Convention
provides for a single technique for continental shelf
delimitation (a median for maritime areas between
opposite coasts, and a lateral equidistance line for
coasts of adjacent States). This method is inspired by
and derives from this equitable criterion: that the
equitable solution, at least prima facie, is an equal
division of the areas of overlap of the continental
shelves of the two States. However the applicability of
this method is subject to the condition that there are no

Art. 6 of the Continental Shelf


Convention states:
1. Where the same continental shelf is adjacent to the
territories of two or more States whose coasts are
opposite each other, the boundary of the continental
shelf appertaining to such States shall be determined
by agreement between them. In the absence of
agreement, and unless another boundary line is
justified by special circumstances, the boundary is the
median line, every point of which is equidistant from
the nearest points of the baselines from which the
breadth of the territorial sea of each State is measured.

CASE CONCERNING THE DELIMITATION OF THE


MARITIME BOUNDARY IN THE GULF OF MAINE
AREA (1994)

CASE CONCERNING THE DELIMITATION OF THE


MARITIME BOUNDARY IN THE GULF OF MAINE
AREA (1994)
Determine the starting point of the line.
In this case, the starting point was chosen by the
Parties (point A). While the Court may use another
starting point, it won't for in the delimitation of a
maritime boundary, both conventional and customary
international law give priority to the criterion that
delimitation must be sought through agreement
between the Parties.

CASE CONCERNING THE DELIMITATION OF THE


MARITIME BOUNDARY IN THE GULF OF MAINE
AREA (1994)
Some factors.
Geological factors are insignificant, given the essentially
continuous geological structure of the strata underlying the
whole of the continental shelf. There is unity and uniformity in
the whole sea-bed, as the continental shelf of the area is just an
undifferentiated part of the continental shelf of the American
eastern
seaboard;
thus
geomorphological
factors
are
insignificant. The same goes for the water column. It isn't
possible to discern any genuine, sure and stable natural
boundariess in so fluctuating an environment such as the waters
of the ocean. It would be futile to seek any element which could
be a stable natural boundary. Thus, the great mass of water in
the delimitation area, just like the sea-bed, also possesses that

CASE CONCERNING THE DELIMITATION OF THE


MARITIME BOUNDARY IN THE GULF OF MAINE
AREA (1994)

What are the rules, methods applicable?

PRINCIPLES UNDER ART. 6.


Any delimitation of the continental shelf effected
unilaterally by one State, regardless of the views of the
other/s concerned, is in international law not opposable
to those States. States have a duty to negotiate with a
view to reaching an agreement and to do so in good
faith with a genuine intention to achieve a positive
result. Any delimitation must be effected by agreement
between the States concerned either by the conclusion
of a direct agreement or by some alternative method
which must be based on consent. And any agreement
or other equivalent solution should involve the

FUNDAMENTAL NORM IN DELIMITATION


the boundary be determined according to the
applicable law, in conformity with equitable principles,
having regard to all relevant circumstances, in order to
achieve an equitable result.s A more complete, precise
reformulation of the fundamental norm, prescribed by
general international law for all maritime delimitations
between neighbor states:

FUNDAMENTAL NORM IN DELIMITATION


1) No maritime delimitation between States with
opposite or adjacent coasts may be effected unilaterally
by one of those States. Such delimitation must be
sought and effected by means of an agreement,
following negotiations conducted in good faith and with
the genuine intention of achieving a positive result.
Where, however, such agreement cannot be achieved,
delimitation should be effected by recourse to a third
party possessing the necessary competence.

FUNDAMENTAL NORM IN DELIMITATION


(2) In either case, delimitation is to be effected by the
application of equitable criteria and by the use of
practical methods capable of ensuring, with regard to
the geographic configuration of the area and other
relevant circumstances, an equitable result.

CONTINENTAL SHELF CONVENTION


INAPPLICABLE
If the goal is only a delimitation of the continental
shelf, then the mandatory application of Art. 6 is
undisputed. However, the goal of this proceeding is to
draw a single delimitation line for both the continental
shelf and the superjacent fishery zone. It is doubtful
whether a treaty obligation which is in terms confined
to the delimitation of the continental shelf can be
extended to a field which is evidently greater and
fundamentally different. To do so would make the
maritime water mass over the shelf a mere accessory
of the latter, and this is unacceptable.

EQUITABLE CRITERIA
There has been no systematic definition of the
equitable criteria for use in international maritime
delimitation. The essential fact to remember is that the
criteria are not rules of law and therefore mandatory in
the different situations, but "equitable", or even
"reasonable", criteria, and that what international law
requires is that recourse be had in each case to the
criterion, or the balance of different criteria, appearing
to be most appropriate to the concrete situation.

ADJACENT V. OPPOSITE
Art. 6 contemplate 2 distinct hypothetical situations. In
appreciating the appropriateness of the equidistance method as
a means of achieving an equitable solution, regard must be had
to the difference between a 'lateral' boundary between adjacent
States and a 'median' boundary between 'opposite' States." The
coasts of two States may be adjacent at certain places and
opposite at others (as in this case). On this latter hypothesis,
difficulties might arise of a practical nature in particular since
every effort should be made to prevent the partial relationship of
adjacency from ultimately predominating over the partial
relationship of oppositeness, or vice-versa. It might become
apparent that adjustments were necessary for this purpose, or
even recourse to a different method.

APPLICABLE EQUITABLE CRITERIA IN THIS


CASE: GEOGRAPHY + AUXILIARY CRITERIA
Remember that this involves a delimitation of 2
distinct elements by means of a single line. This
precludes the use of any criteria which are
inappropriate for the delimitation of either element. The
Court will apply criteria derived from geography, mainly
the geography of coasts, which has (primarily) a
physical aspect and (secondarily) a political aspect.
Some corrections must be made to certain effects of its
application that might be unreasonable, so that the
concurrent use of auxiliary criteria may appear
indispensable, such as length of coastlines, the

APPLICABLE PRACTICAL METHODS


The practical methods can only be methods
appropriate for use against a background of geography.
Moreover, the methods used must be just as suitable
for the delimitation of the sea-bed and its subsoil as for
the delimitation of the superjacent waters and their
fishery resources. Thus, only geometrical methods will
serve. Given the configuration of the Gulf of Maine
coastline, the delimitation line isnnt a unidirectional line.
Take note that at the northeastern sector the coasts are
laterally adjacent, while at the closing sector the coasts
are opposite. Thus in the first sector, the boundary is a

THE DELIMITATION

FIRST SEGMENT
The practical method to be applied must be a
geometrical one based on respect for the geographical
situation of the coasts between which the delimitation
is to be effected, and at the same time suitable for
producing a result satisfying the criterion for the
division of disputed areas. Thus the equidistance
method isnnt used, but the method of drawing
perpendiculars. Accordingly, one may justifiably draw
from point A two lines respectively perpendicular to the
two basic coastal lines. These perpendiculars form, at
point A, on one side an acute angle of about 82' and on

SECOND SEGMENT
Stage one.
This involves the determination of the median line.
Remember, the choice of method is essentially
dependent on geography. In this case (given the
rectangular shape of the area and the quasi-parallelism
between the lines used in the delimitation, and the fact
that the coasts are opposite), the application of any
method of geometrical origin can in practice only result
in the drawing of a median delimitation line. Such a line

SECOND SEGMENT
Stage two.
The ratio between the coastal fronts of the Parties on the Gulf of
Maine as is thus 1.38 to 1. This ratio should be reflected in the
location of the second segment of the delimitation line. The
appropriate method should be to apply the ratio selected to a
line drawn across the Gulf where the coasts of Nova Scotia and
Massachusetts are nearest to each other. The presence of some
islands and isles must also be considered. The central segment
of the delimitation line will correspond, over its entire length,
with the corrected median line as so established. It will begin
where this line intersects, within the Gulf, the bisector drawn

THIRD SEGMENT
This is the longest portion. This is the segment which lies
outside and over against the Gulf of Maine. It is obvious that the
only kind of practical method which can be considered for this
purpose is a geometrical method - the drawing of a
perpendicular to the closing line of the Gulf. In conclusion, taking
point A as a fixed point and assigning letter B to the meetingpoint between the first two segments as above defined, letter C
to the meeting-point between the second and third segments on
the closing line of the Gulf, and letter D to the point where the
first segment reaches, to seaward, the last place on its path
where the claims of the two Parties overlap, the delimitation line
fixed between the maritime jurisdictions of Canada and the US
will be the line successively connecting points A, B, C and D.

VERIFICATION OF THE EQUITABLE CHARACTER OF


THE RESULT
This is necessary only for the third segment, which is the real
subject of the dispute due to the potential resources of the
subsoil and the fisheries. Some enquiry whether, in addition to
the factors provided by the geography of the Gulf itself, there are
no others that should be taken into account, is an
understandable step. In this case, the Court concluded that there
are absolutely no conditions of an exceptional kind which might
justify any correction of the delimitation line that was drawn. The
delimitation was effected in compliance with the governing
principles and rules of law, applying equitable criteria and
appropriate methods accordingly, thus producing an equitable
overall result.