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Chapter Summary

The exploitation of the natural resources of the Moon and other celestial bodies leads to one of the most fascinating future developments in the field of space law and space related activities. The Moon Agreement, whose main purpose is to set out rules to govern the exploitation of lunar and other celestial bodies' natural resources, has not been ratified by the majority of States, comprising the space-faring ones. The analysis of the law of the sea has revealed the existence of a new way of interpreting the 'Common Heritage of Mankind' concept, contained in the 1994 Implementation Agreement, which softens to a large extent the strict economic requirements of the original version of the concept. The legal regime to regulate the exploitation of the natural resources of the Moon and other celestial bodies should take the form of an international agreement among States.

Keywords: celestial bodies; Common Heritage of Mankind; legal regime; Moon agreement; natural resources; space law



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