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Forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining: towards sponsoring states of convenience?

Klaas Willaert (UGent)
(2020) Revue Belge de Droit International. 2019/1-2. p.116-138
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Abstract
Beyond the boundaries of national jurisdiction, the seabed and its mineral resources are governed by a complex international regime, which determines by whom and under what conditions these natural resources can be exploited. However, it must be noted that companies wishing to pursue activities in the Area must be sponsored by a state, so national legislation defining the conditions to obtain a certificate of sponsorship also plays an important role. As will be demonstrated in this article, the content of these national laws is very diverse though, which can create possible mismatches and may induce deep sea mining enterprises to change their sponsoring state. Therefore, the phenomenon of flags of convenience in shipping does not seem far off: depending on the content of the national legislation on deep sea mining and how strictly it is enforced, juridical persons could strategically choose to register their company in a certain state and apply for sponsorship there. In this article, a theoretical analysis of this hypothesis is followed by a comparative evaluation of the national legislation on deep sea mining of two carefully selected states (Belgium and the Cook Islands), in order to determine whether forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining is legally possible and whether widespread differences between national laws can urge deep sea mining companies to go down that road. Furthermore, the consequences of such developments are pondered and possible solutions are suggested.
Keywords
law of the sea, deep seabed, national legislation, sponsoring state

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Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Willaert, Klaas. “Forum Shopping within the Context of Deep Sea Mining: Towards Sponsoring States of Convenience?” Revue Belge de Droit International, vol. 2019/1-2, Bruylant, 2020, pp. 116–38.
APA
Willaert, K. (2020). Forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining: towards sponsoring states of convenience? Revue Belge de Droit International, 2019/1-2, 116–138.
Chicago author-date
Willaert, Klaas. 2020. “Forum Shopping within the Context of Deep Sea Mining: Towards Sponsoring States of Convenience?” Revue Belge de Droit International 2019/1-2: 116–38.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Willaert, Klaas. 2020. “Forum Shopping within the Context of Deep Sea Mining: Towards Sponsoring States of Convenience?” Revue Belge de Droit International 2019/1–2: 116–138.
Vancouver
1.
Willaert K. Forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining: towards sponsoring states of convenience? Revue Belge de Droit International. 2020;2019/1-2:116–38.
IEEE
[1]
K. Willaert, “Forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining: towards sponsoring states of convenience?,” Revue Belge de Droit International, vol. 2019/1–2, pp. 116–138, 2020.
@article{8634178,
  abstract     = {Beyond the boundaries of national jurisdiction, the seabed and its mineral resources are governed by a complex international regime, which determines by whom and under what conditions these natural resources can be exploited. However, it must be noted that companies wishing to pursue activities in the Area must be sponsored by a state, so national legislation defining the conditions to obtain a certificate of sponsorship also plays an important role. As will be demonstrated in this article, the content of these national laws is very diverse though, which can create possible mismatches and may induce deep sea mining enterprises to change their sponsoring state. Therefore, the phenomenon of flags of convenience in shipping does not seem far off: depending on the content of the national legislation on deep sea mining and how strictly it is enforced, juridical persons could strategically choose to register their company in a certain state and apply for sponsorship there. In this article, a theoretical analysis of this hypothesis is followed by a comparative evaluation of the national legislation on deep sea mining of two carefully selected states (Belgium and the Cook Islands), in order to determine whether forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining is legally possible and whether widespread differences between national laws can urge deep sea mining companies to go down that road. Furthermore, the consequences of such developments are pondered and possible solutions are suggested.},
  author       = {Willaert, Klaas},
  issn         = {0035-0788},
  journal      = {Revue Belge de Droit International},
  keywords     = {law of the sea,deep seabed,national legislation,sponsoring state},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {116--138},
  publisher    = {Bruylant},
  title        = {Forum shopping within the context of deep sea mining: towards sponsoring states of convenience?},
  volume       = {2019/1-2},
  year         = {2020},
}