The Secretariat of the International Seabed Authority has received a proposal from Nautilus Minerals Inc., (‘Nautilus’) a company incorporated in Canada, to enter into negotiations to form a joint venture with the Enterprise for the purpose of developing eight of the reserved area blocks in the Clarion Clipperton Zone (CCZ).

The terms of the proposal by Nautilus are set out in a draft heads of agreement, which is annexed to a document to be submitted for the consideration of the Council at the nineteenth session in July 2013 under symbol ISBA/19/C/4.

The Enterprise is the commercial arm of the Authority, empowered to conduct its own mining, initially through joint ventures with other entities. Until seabed mining becomes a commercial reality, the functions of the Enterprise are to be carried out by the Secretariat.

During the interim period, the Secretariat will monitor trends and developments, assess prospecting and exploration data and the results of marine scientific research, evaluate data on seabed areas reserved for the Authority, assess approaches to joint ventures, and study managerial policy options for administering the Enterprise.