Declarations and statements

IMPORTANT: Official up-to-date information regarding the declarations and statements under articles 287, 298 and 310 of the Convention and texts of these declarations and statements are available at the web site of the Treaty Section of the Office of Legal Affairs of the United Nations.


Introduction:

Article 310 of the Convention allows States and entities to make declarations or statements regarding its application at the time of signing, ratifying or acceding to the Convention, which do not purport to exclude or modify the legal effect of the provisions of the Convention.

Article 310 reads:

    "Article 310. Declarations and statements "Article 309 does not preclude a State, when signing, ratifying or acceding to this Convention, from making declarations or statements, however phrased or named, with a view, inter alia, to the harmonization of its laws and regulations with the provisions of this Convention, provided that such declarations or statements do not purport to exclude or to modify the legal effect of the provisions of this Convention in their application to that State."

Article 287, paragraph 1, provides that States and entities, when signing, ratifying or acceding to the Convention, or at any time thereafter, may make declarations specifying the forums for the settlement of disputes which they accept.

Article 287, paragraph 1, reads:

    "Article 287. Choice of procedure "When signing, ratifying or acceding to this Convention or at any time thereafter, a State shall be free to choose, by means of a written declaration, one or more of the following means for the settlement of disputes concerning the interpretation or application of this Convention:

      (a) the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea established in accordance with Annex VI;
      (b) the International Court of Justice;
      (c) an arbitral tribunal constituted in accordance with Annex VII;
      (d) a special arbitral tribunal constituted in accordance with Annex VIII for one or more of the categories of disputes specified therein."

In addition, article 298, paragraph 1, allows States and entities to declare that they exclude the application of the compulsory binding procedures for the settlement of disputes under the Convention in respect of certain specified categories kinds of disputes. Article 298, paragraph 1, reads:

    "Article 298. Optional exceptions to applicability of section 2

      "1. When signing, ratifying or acceding to this Convention or at any time thereafter, a State may, without prejudice to the obligations arising under section 1, declare in writing that it does not accept any one or more of the procedures provided for in section 2 with respect to one or more of the following categories of disputes:

        (a)

          (i) disputes concerning the interpretation or application of articles 15, 74 and 83 relating to sea boundary delimitations, or those involving historic bays or titles, provided that a State having made such a declaration shall, when such a dispute arises subsequent to the entry into force of this Convention and where no agreement within a reasonable period of time is reached in negotiations between the parties, at the request of any party to the dispute, accept submission of the matter to conciliation under Annex V, section 2; and provided further that any dispute that necessarily involves the concurrent consideration of any unsettled dispute concerning sovereignty or other rights over continental or insular land territory shall be excluded form such submission;
          (ii) after the conciliation commission has presented its report, which shall state the reasons on which it is based, the parties shall negotiate an agreement on the basis of that report; if these negotiations do not result in an agreement, the parties shall, by mutual consent, submit the question to one of the procedures provided for in section 2, unless the parties otherwise agree;
          (iii) this subparagraph does not apply to any sea boundary dispute finally settled by an arrangement between the parties, or to any such dispute which is to be settled in accordance with a bilateral or multilateral agreement binding upon those parties;
        (b) disputes concerning military activities, including military activities by government vessels and aircraft engaged in non-commercial service, and disputes concerning law enforcement activities in regard to the exercise of sovereign rights or jurisdiction excluded from the jurisdiction of a court or tribunal under article 297, paragraph 2 or 3;

        (c) disputes in respect of which the Security Council of the United Nations is exercising the functions assigned to it by the Charter of the United Nations, unless the Security Council decides to remove the matter from its agenda or calls upon the parties to settle it by the means provided for in this Convention."

         

PLEASE NOTE: Declarations and statements with respect to the Convention and to the Agreement on Part XI made before 31 December 1996 - upon signature, ratification or accession - have been analyzed and published in "The Law of the Sea: Declarations and statements with respect to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and to the Agreement relating to the Implementation of Part XI of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea", (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.97.V.3).


United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea:
Declarations made upon signature, ratification, accession or succession or anytime thereafter

Upon signature Upon ratification/
accession
Anytime thereafter
  1. Algeria
  2. Angola
  3. Argentina
  4. Belarus
  5. Belgium
  6. Bolivia
  7. Brazil
  8. Cabo Verde
  9. Chile
  10. Costa Rica
  11. Cuba
  12. European Union
  13. Finland
  14. France
  15. Greece
  16. Guinea
  17. Iran
  18. Iraq
  19. Italy
  20. Luxembourg
  21. Mali
  22. Nicaragua
  23. Oman
  24. Philippines
  25. Qatar
  26. Romania
  27. Russian Federation
  28. Sao Tome and Principe
  29. Spain
  30. Sudan
  31. Sweden
  32. Ukraine
  33. Uruguay
  1. Algeria
  2. Argentina
  3. Austria
  4. Bangladesh
  5. Belarus
  6. Belgium
  7. Brazil
  8. Cabo Verde
  9. Canada
  10. Chile
  11. China
  12. Croatia
  13. Cuba
  14. Czech Republic
  15. Denmark
  16. Ecuador
  17. Egypt
  18. Estonia
  19. European Union
  20. Fiji
  21. Finland
  22. France
  23. Germany
  24. Greece
  25. Guatemala
  26. Guinea-Bissau
  27. Hungary
  28. Iceland
  29. India
  30. Ireland
  31. Italy
  32. Kiribati
  33. Kuwait
  34. Latvia
  35. Lithuania
  36. Malaysia
  37. Malta
  38. Mexico
  39. Montenegro
  40. Morocco
  41. Netherlands
  42. Nicaragua
  43. Norway
  44. Oman
  45. Pakistan
  46. Panama
  47. Philippines
  48. Portugal
  49. Republic of Moldova
  50. Romania
  51. Russian Federation
  52. Saudi Arabia
  53. Serbia
  54. Slovenia
  55. South Africa
  56. Spain
  57. Sweden
  58. Switzerland
  59. Thailand
  60. Timor-Leste
  61. Tunisia
  62. Ukraine
  63. United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  64. United Republic of Tanzania
  65. Uruguay
  66. Viet Nam
  67. Yemen
  1. Algeria (22 May 2018)
  2. Angola (14 October 2009)
  3. Argentina (26 October 2012)
  4. Australia (22 March 2002)
  5. Bangladesh (14 December 2009)
  6. Bulgaria (2 December 2015)
  7. China (25 August 2006)
  8. Croatia (4 November 1999)
  9. Democratic Republic of Congo (15 April 2014)
  10. Egypt (16 February 2017)
  11. Equatorial Guinea (20 February 2002)
  12. Gabon (23 January 2009)
  13. Greece (16 January 2015)
  14. Honduras (18 June 2002)
  15. Italy (26 January 1997)
  16. Kenya (24 January 2017)
  17. Madagascar (20 December 2012)
  18. Montenegro (20 May 2011)
  19. Netherlands (13 February 2009 and 27 February 2017)
  20. Palau (27 April 2006)
  21. Panama (29 April 2015)
  22. Republic of Korea (18 April 2006)
  23. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (22 November 2010)
  24. Saudi Arabia (10 January 2014 and 2 January 2018)
  25. Singapore (12 December 2018)
  26. Slovenia (11 October 2001)
  27. Spain (19 July 2002)
  28. Togo (12 April 2019)
  29. Trinidad and Tobago (17 October 2007 and 13 February 2009)
  30. Tunisia (22 May 2001)
  31. United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (12 January 1998 and 7 April 2003)

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