EQUITABLE PRINCIPLES OF MARITIME BOUNDARY DELIMITATION, The Quest for Distributive Justice in International Law, download eBook pdf

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Equity emerged as a powerful symbol of aspired redistribution in
international relations. Operationally, it has had limited impact in the
Westphalian system of nation states – except for maritime boundary
delimitations. This book deals with the role of equity in international
law, and offers a detailed case study on maritime boundary delimitation in
the context of the enclosure movement in the law of the sea. It assesses
treaty law and the impact of the United Nations Convention on the Law
of the Sea. It depicts the process of trial and error in the extensive case law
of the International Court of Justice and arbitral tribunals and expounds
the underlying principles and factors informing the methodology both
in adjudication and negotiations. Unlike other books, the main focus is
on equity and its implications for legal methodology, in particular offering
further guidance in the field of international economic law.
thomas cottier is a full professor of European and International
Economic Law at the University of Bern, Switzerland, and former
Managing Director of the World Trade Institute. Much of his professional
work has been dedicated to international economic law, in particular
international trade regulation, working in the field both as an academic
and a negotiator and chair and member of WTO panels.

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List of tables xviii
List of maps xix
Preface xxiii
Acknowledgements xxvi
Table of cases xxix
Table of treaties and instruments xxxiv
Equity revisited: an introduction 1
I. The renaissance of equity 1
A. New frontiers 1
B. Traditional functions and the decline of equity 8
C. The rebirth of equity in the law of natural resources 16
II. The quest for global equity 21
A. The programmatic function of equity 22
B. The impact of sovereignty and self-determination 25
III. The legal nature of equity 28
A. Different layers 28
B. A source of new legal principles 29
C. Ambivalence and the need for context 31
D. The impact of different schools 34
IV. Conclusion 39
part i Context: the enclosure of the seas 43
1 The silent revolution 45
I. The partition of the seas 45
II. Conferences, conventions, and customary law 49
A. UNCLOS I, II and the Geneva Conventions 49

B. UNCLOS III and the LOS Convention 50
C. Multiple sources of law 59
D. A historical perspective 63
2 The new maritime zones: evolution and legal
foundations 67
I. Horizontally shared zones and quasi-territoriality 67
II. The continental shelf zone 70
A. Description and development 70
B. The scope of shelf rights 74
C. The foundation and legal nature of shelf rights 77

  1. The concept of natural prolongation of the territory of the
    coastal state 77
  2. Distance: close relationship of the coastal state to offshore
    marine spaces 92
    D. Summary and conclusions 101
    III. The exclusive economic zone 104
    A. Description and development 104
    B. The foundation and legal nature of EEZ rights 111
  3. Permanent sovereignty over natural resources and the close
    relationship of the coastal state to offshore marine
    spaces 111
  4. Customary law 114
    C. The scope of EEZ rights 116
  5. State practice and customary law 116
  6. The LOS Convention 118
    IV. The relationship of the continental shelf and the
    EEZ 121
    A. Divergencies 121
    B. Convergencies: towards a single homogeneous zone 122
    C. Summary and conclusions 125
  7. Towards a presumption of single maritime boundaries 125
  8. Exceptions: diverging boundaries 128
    3 Distributive effects of the enclosure movement: an
    assessment of global equity 130
    I. The quest for global equity in maritime law 130
    II. The allocation of marine spaces 140

A. The main beneficiaries 140
B. The position of land-locked and geographically disadvantaged
states 143

  1. Mineral resources 144
  2. Living resources: the concept of equitable surplus
    allocation 146
    III. Developments in fisheries production and market
    shares 153
    IV. Conservation and management – equity towards
    sustainable use 161
    V. Structural limits to equitable sharing in contemporary
    international law 170
    part ii The new boundaries 177
    4 Approaches to delimitation 179
    I. The basic dilemma 179
    II. Technical and scientific methods of delimitation 182
    A. Geometrical and geographical methods 183
  3. The method of equidistance or median line 184
  4. The bisector method 191
  5. Perpendicular to the general direction of the coastal
    line 195
  6. The extrapolation of the land boundary 196
  7. Parallel lines (corridors) 197
  8. Enclaving 197
  9. Annex: problems of scale distortions 198
    B. Geological and ecological methods (natural
    boundaries) 199
  10. Practical problems of scientific evidence 200
  11. Theoretical and legal issues 202
    III. Competing legal approaches to delimitation 204
    A. Four regulatory models 204
  12. The model of juridical vacuum (ex aequo
    et bono) 205
  13. The model of equity and equitable principles 206
  14. The model of residual rules and exceptions (equidistance
    or median line) 208
  1. Equidistance v. equity: the model of agreed equitable
    solutions based on international law 213
    IV. Conclusions 233
    5 State practice 236
    I. Unilateral acts (proclamations and legislation) 236
    A. Continental shelf 236
    B. Fisheries and exclusive economic zones 238
    II. Maritime boundary delimitation agreements 242
    A. Indications in agreements 243
    B. Models and methods applied 244
    C. The impact of the 1958 Shelf Convention equidistance–special
    circumstances rule 245
    D. Assessment and former studies 246
    E. Protracted negotiations 250
    III. The functional approach in co-operation agreements 252
    A. The model of revenue sharing and compensation 257
    B. The model of shared jurisdiction in boundary area pending
    exploration 258
    C. Themodel of long-lasting zones overlapping a boundary line 259
    D. The model of common zones under joint
    administration 261
    E. The potential and limits of co-operation and
    package deals 266
    6 Judicial and conciliatory settlements 271
    I. Introductory 271
    II. Claims and results in legal proceedings 272
    A. The 1969 North Sea Continental Shelf cases 272
    B. The 1977/78 Anglo-French Channel arbitration 275
    C. The 1981 Arbitration concerning the Border between the
    Emirates of Dubai and Sharjah 279
    D. The 1982 and 1985 Tunisia v. Libya Continental Shelf
    cases 281
    E. The 1984 Canada v. United States Gulf of Maine case 285
    F. The 1985 Guinea v. Guinea-Bissau arbitration 290
    G. The 1985 Libya v. Malta Continental Shelf case 294
    H. The 1992 Canada v. France St. Pierre and Miquelon
    arbitration 297

I. The 1992 Land, Island and Maritime Frontier Dispute
(El Salvador v. Honduras) 300
J. The 1993 Jan Mayen case (Denmark v. Norway) 303
K. The 1999 Eritrea v. Yemen award 306
L. The 2001 Case Concerning Maritime Delimitation and
Territorial Questions (Qatar v. Bahrain) 311
M. The 2002 Case Concerning the Land and Maritime Boundary
(Cameroon v. Nigeria) 315
N. The 2006 Barbados v. Trinidad and Tobago award 318
O. The 2007 Guyana v. Suriname Award 321
P. The 2007 Territorial and Maritime Dispute (Nicaragua v.
Honduras) 324
Q. The 2009 Case Concerning the Maritime Delimitation
in the Black Sea (Romania v. Ukraine) 327
R. The 2012 Bay of Bengal (Bangladesh v. Myanmar) case 332
S. The 2012 Territorial and Maritime Dispute (Nicaragua v.
Colombia) 336
T. The 2014 Maritime Dispute (Peru v. Chile) 338
III. Claims and Results in Domestic and Quasi-judicial
Proceedings 341
A. The 1979 United States CEIP Delimitation
Recommendations 341
B. The 1981 Jan Mayen Ridge Conciliation 344
C. The 2002 Arbitration between Newfoundland and
Labrador and Nova Scotia 346
IV. Assessment 348
A. Individuality of configurations 348
B. The importance of the compromis (special agreement) 349
C. Claims and the role of equidistance 350
D. Geometrical constructions and results 352
E. The common basis of equity 352
7 An assessment of customary law 354
I. The state of play in customary law 354
A. The prohibition of unilateral delimitation 357
B. The absence of a duty to negotiate boundaries 358
C. The absence of specific customary rules for shelf and EEZ
delimitation 359

  1. The model of residual rules and exceptions
    (equidistance–special circumstances) 359
  1. The model of equitable principles 363
  2. Other methods and legal approaches 365
  3. Customary obligation to achieve an equitable solution 365
  4. Customary obligation of mutual co-operation? 367
    II. The potential and limitation of equidistance 369
    part iii Delimitation based on equity 373
    8 The rule of equity 375
    I. The rationale of equity and equitable principles 375
    A. Corrective or autonomous equity? 375
    B. The inherent need for underlying values and principles 379
    C. The normative level of equitable principles 381
    D. A closer look at equidistance–special circumstances 381
  5. A clear and simple model? 382
  6. A more predictable model? 385
  7. The shortcomings of an equidistance rule 386
    E. The roots of the controversy: jurisprudence and legal
    theory 389
    F. The appropriateness of equity 392
    II. The evolution of the fundamental norm of equity 394
    A. Roots of the fundamental rule 394
  8. The 1909 Grisbadarna arbitration 394
  9. The 1951 Anglo–Norwegian Fisheries case 398
    B. 1969: The beginnings 403
    C. 1977: Reducing the rule 404
    D. 1982 and 1984: The victory of discretionary determination 405
    E. 1985: The turning of the tide 409
    F. 1999–2014: The two-step and three-step approach 413
    G. Conclusions 417
    III. Legal foundations of the fundamental rule of equity 418
    A. The Truman Proclamation and legal thinking 421
    B. The principle of peaceful settlement of disputes (Article 33 UN
    Charter) 422
    C. Justice, good faith, and equity in the North Sea Continental Shelf
    cases 423
    D. Judicial legislation 426
    E. Decision-making ex aequo et bono in disguise? 430
    F. Subsequent case law 435
  1. Paramount foundation in equity 435
  2. Foundation in the LOS Convention 437
    G. Towards a set of independent equitable principles 438
    9 Conceptual issues and the context of equity 440
    I. The conceptual task 440
    A. The quest for equitable standards 440
    B. The process in case law 442
    C. Basic conceptual problems 451
    II. The impact of underlying concepts, objectives and
    ideas 453
    A. The relational nature of equity and equitable
    standards 453
    B. The object of delimitation: resources or marine space? 456
    C. The window of delimitation 459
    D. The issue of natural boundaries 462
  3. The impact of natural prolongation and plate tectonics 463
  4. The impact of ecology (ecosystems) 470
    E. A doctrine of the closest relationship 472
    F. The impact of underlying objectives and values 473
    III. The legal environment of equity 475
    A. Pacta sunt servanda 476
  5. Delimitation and related agreements 476
  6. The principle of uti possidetis 479
  7. Compromis (special agreement) 482
    B. Historic rights 485
    C. Estoppel and acquiescence 489
    D. Third party interests 491
  8. Substantive claims and rights 491
  9. Procedural claims and rights: intervention or
    fair hearing ? 494
    IV. The political environment of equity and the need for
    transparency 510
    V. Conclusion: essential elements of an equitable
    solution 512
    10 Justiciable standards of equity 515
    I. The legal nature of equitable standards 515

A. The requirement of justiciability 515
B. The legal nature of equitable principles and relevant
circumstances 518

  1. Equitable principles 518
  2. The nature of relevant circumstances 522
  3. The element of ‘equitable solution’ 525
    II. Equitable standards related to physical geography 525
    A. Standards related to surface coastal configuration 525
  4. The coast dominates the sea (CDS) 526
  5. The principles of non-encroachment and non-cutting-off
    (NEP, NCP) 530
    B. Equitable principles related to space allocation 538
  6. Equal division of marine space (EDS) 538
    C. The principle of fair and reasonable proportionality (FRP) 541
  7. The relationship to the coastal lengths 542
  8. The problem of specification 543
  9. The field of application 556
  10. Assessment 557
    D. Relevant circumstances related to resource allocation 559
  11. The location of resources 560
  12. The possibility of eco-geographical criteria 563
  13. Inherent limitations to resource allocation in general law of
    delimitation 564
  14. Improving resource allocation by negotiation and by special
    agreement (compromis) 567
    III. Equitable standards related to conduct and human
    geography 568
    A. Standards related to conduct of coastal states 568
  15. Relevant circumstance: historical conduct prior to the creation
    of the legal shelf and the EEZ 571
  16. The principle of recent and contemporary conduct
    (RCCP) 574
  17. Conclusions 577
    B. Social and economic standards 577
  18. General social and economic interests 578
  19. Specifically related economic interests, in particular to the EEZ,
    and the principle of viability (VP) 583
  20. The circumstance of cultural and ethnological
    interests 589

C. National security interests 590
D. Toward a principle of third generational rights 593
IV. Ad hoc concretization of equity by way of special agreement
(compromis) 596
11 The methodology of judicial boundary delimitation 602
I. Competing schools of jurisprudence 602
A. Introduction 602
B. Topical jurisprudence 605
II. The programme of delimitation 610
A. Adjudication of legal issues outside the realm of equity 611
B. Defining the window of delimitation 611
C. Adjudication of rights and obligations stemming from
treaty law, historical rights, estoppel and acquiescence
or any other legal title 613
D. Adjudication of territorial jurisdiction 614
III. The proper methodology of equity 614
A. The beginnings in the courts: the idea of weighing and balancing
factors 614
B. Toward a topical, problem-oriented methodology of
equity 622

  1. Assessing the type of boundary required or permitted 623
  2. Assessment and adjudication of equitable principles 625
  3. Specification and visualization of principles 625
  4. Vector analysis and co-ordination of boundary lines 626
  5. The corrective impact of relevant circumstances and of the
    requirement of an equitable result 628
    C. The methodological impact of the goal of an equitable
    apportionment 630
    D. Role of technical methods and geometrical
    constructions 631
    E. Iura novit curia and the need for structural pairing of substance
    and procedure 631
    F. Conclusions 634
    IV. The problem and impact of islands 635
    A. Introduction 635
    B. Legal issues 638
  6. Basic entitlement to shelf and EEZ 638
  1. Two categories of islands: constitutive and accessory
    entitlement 641
    C. Assessment and adjudication of equitable
    principles 642
  2. The impact of additive islands: ignoring
    locations 642
  3. Constitutive islands 644
  4. Special circumstances and geometric fixation 644
    12 The role of equity in negotiations 645
    I. Introduction 645
    II. The rule of equity and equitable principles in negotiated
    settlements 647
    A. Mandatory or residual rules? 647
    B. Law and policy in the negotiating process 653
    C. Equity and the methodology of negotiations 654
  5. The role of equitable standards 654
  6. The proper methodology of delimitation in
    negotiations 655
    D. Conclusion 660
    III. The equitable obligation to negotiate 660
    A. A new dimension of law 660
    B. The duty to negotiate maritime boundary
    delimitations 663
  7. The scope of obligation 663
  8. The impact of good faith and legitimate expectations 665
  9. The prohibition of acts frustrating negotiations 666
    C. Foundations of the duty to negotiate 672
  10. Issues 672
  11. Specific foundations 672
  12. UN Charter? 674
  13. Customary law: prior consultation 675
  14. Equity 676
    D. Legal effects of violations of the duty to negotiate 679
  15. Compliance and possible reprisals 679
  16. The impact in court proceedings 681
  17. The 1978 Aegean Continental Shelf case: an opportunity
    missed 682
  18. Ordering negotiations 687

Appendix I Maritime boundary agreements
1942–1992 691
Appendix II General maps 721
Bibliography 747
Index 778

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