Call for proposals for a study on the scope, purpose and administration of a Global Fund from the financial payments from deep seabed mining


The International Seabed Authority (ISA) is inviting proposals for a consultancy to undertake a study on the scope, purpose and administration of a global fund from the financial payments from deep seabed mining in the international seabed area (the Area).

The Finance Committee (FC) of ISA is in the process of developing recommendations on an appropriate mechanism for the equitable sharing of the financial benefits (in the form of royalties) generated by seabed minerals exploitation in the Area. The work undertaken so far on this topic has led to the development of two substantive reports presented to the FC in July 2019 and April 2020 respectively, and to the development of three alternative formulae for fair and equitable allocation to individual member States of a given sum of royalties available for distribution. The formulae under consideration are based on the calculation of each country’s population as a percentage of the world’s population; using established measures in a manner fully consistent with Aristotle’s principle of equity or proportionality. This distribution would then be adjusted through a social distribution weight in such a way as to redistribute income from higher income State Parties to the developing countries referenced in Article 140 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

As an adjunct to the above distribution formula, or as an alternative, the FC is also exploring the concept of a ‘Seabed Sustainability Fund’ (or Global Fund). Although further work is needed to develop the purpose of this fund, the overall philosophy behind its establishment is to channel part, or all, of the financial benefits generated by seabed minerals exploitation into programmes, projects and activities that are consistent with the status of seabed minerals as the common heritage of mankind.

ISA is therefore seeking a consultant with requisite experience in economics and related fields to undertake a study in line with the Terms of Reference of work in the Annex to the call and invites proposals are to be submitted via email to by 18 September 2020.

More information is available on ISA’s website:

For enquiries:

Ms. Marie Bourrel-McKinnon, Senior Policy Officer – Special Assistant to the Secretary-General, ISA (


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