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Issues and Strategies for Outer Continental Shelf Claims

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image of The International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law

The Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS or the Commission) is a specialist body with a limited mandate with the potential to have a significant impact upon the dynamic of the law of the sea in coming decades as more coastal States seek to claim outer continental shelves (OCS). By the end of 2007, the Commission had received nine submissions but made only three recommendations. Many coastal States will be lodging OCS submissions in the coming years, raising issues as to the Commission's workload and capacity to efficiently consider each submission. Coastal States need to be mindful not only of the legal but also of the practical and strategic issues that are emerging in OCS submissions, including how many of them can meet the May 2009 submission cut-off. Making a partial OCS claim may be one approach. A review is undertaken of relevant State and Commission practice to date.

Affiliations: 1: Professor of International Law, ANU College of Law, Australian National University


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