The Convention, which was finalised at a diplomatic conference in Nairobi in May this year, will extend the authority of participating States to call for the removal of a wreck, or any wreckage from a ship, to the EEZ of that State whenever there is a danger or impediment to navigation or a threat that may reasonably be expected to result in a major harmful consequences to the marine environment or related interests of those States. It also gives participating States, without prejudice to their existing laws, the option to extend its provisions, which include the maintenance of compulsory insurance and a right of direct action against the insurer, to its own territorial waters. It will enter into force 12 months after the ratification of 10 States.
• Is the Convention likely to be ratified. If so, are many States likely to extend its provisions to their territorial waters.
• What, if any, problems are foreseen.
• Is the UK likely to ratify and adopt it to its territorial waters. How will that effect existing laws. Is SOSREP likely to be involved.
• What are the views of ship owners, P&I insurers and salvors.
Archie Bishop – Holman Fenwick & Willan/Int. Salvage Union
Richard Shaw – Univ. of Southampton, Inst. of Maritime Law
Holman Fenwick & Willan, Marlow House, Lloyds Avenue, London EC3