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In accordance with paragraph 15, of section 3, of the annex to the 1994 Agreement, the Council shall consist of 36 members elected by the Assembly in the following order:
As “the executive organ of ISA”, the Council establishes specific policies in conformity with UNCLOS and the general policies set by the Assembly. It supervises and coordinates implementation of the regime established by UNCLOS to promote and regulate exploration for and exploitation of deep-sea minerals by States, corporations and other entities. Under this system, no such activity may legally take place until contracts have been signed between each interested entity and ISA. The Council’s task is to draw up the terms of contracts, approve contract applications, oversee implementation of the contracts, and establish environmental and other standards. Its specific functions include the following:
The Council will also assume additional responsibilities once deep-sea mining commences. These include the issuance of directives to the Enterprise, action (including compensation) to protect land-based mineral producers in the developing countries from adverse economic effects of seabed production, and the establishment of mechanisms for a staff of inspectors who would ensure compliance with ISA’s regulations and contracts.