Meeting of the Assembly

The 19th Session of the International Seabed Authority

The International Seabed Authority reached a milestone in its administration of the mineral resources of the deep seabed Area with the approval of exploration plans for cobalt-rich ferromanganese crusts by Chinese and Japanese entities as it concluded its nineteenth session a day earlier in Kingston (15-25 July).

The nineteenth session of the International Seabed Authority ended a day early in Kingston on Thursday 25 July after its Assembly completed debate on the Secretary-General’s annual report and acted on four decisions.

The International Seabed Authority received a contribution of US$20,000.00 to its Voluntary Trust Fund from the Government of the People’s Republic of China on 3 July 2013.

ISA Secretary-General, Mr. Nii Allotey Odunton, accepted the donation, which was made on behalf of the Government of the People’s Republic of China by His Excellency Mr. Zheng Qingdian, Permanent Representative to the Authority and Ambassador to Jamaica.  

This is China’s fourth contribution towards the fund bringing the total contributed to the fund to US$80,000.

The Council of the ISA, at its final meeting of the 19th Session, this morning recommended the adoption by the Assembly of a draft decision to institute a fixed overhead charge of $47,000 to be payable annually by contractors to cover the administration and supervision of contracts and review of their annual reports by the Authority.

In the wake of renewed interest in potential commercial exploitation for deep seabed minerals, the Council of the International Seabed Authority reviewed a summary Secretariat note from a technical report that provided a framework for polymetallic nodule exploitation in the Area.

A new and significant development in the work of the International Seabed Authority was reached in Kingston this morning when the Authority’s Council decided to approve the plans of work for exploration of cobalt-rich ferromanganese crusts submitted by two corporations sponsored by China and Japan.

The ISA Council today continues discussions on the LTC Report presented by its Chairman, Dr. Russell Howorth.

During its meeting held 8-12 July in Kingston, the Commission has selected 8 candidates for its Contractor Training Programmes.

At its meeting on 8 July 2013, the Commission appointed a subgroup from its membership to carry out an initial review and appraisal of the applications and to report back to the full Commission.

In selecting candidates, the Commission considered and applied the relative regulations, as well as the principles, policies, guidelines and procedures applicable to the training programmes.

The International Seabed Authority began its nineteenth session today with the election of its president and the adoption of an extensive agenda which includes consideration and approval of revised regulations on prospecting and exploration for polymetallic nodules.

New applications for exploration licences,  development of an appropriate exploitation regime and challenges posed by effective management of contracts for exploration in the Area are among issues to be dealt with at this year's ISA 19th Session in Kingston from July 15-26.