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.

With the earliest polymetallic nodules exploration contracts with the Authority expiring in 2016 and 2017, and contractors likely to proceed to exploitation, it has become urgent for a comprehensive set of regulations to be developed and the Secretariat to be strengthened to handle the anticipated increase in its workload.

The Authority’s 25-member expert Legal and Technical Commission considered these matters as well as new applications for plans of work for exploration at its meetings this week from 8 to 12 July.  Its recommendations will be examined by the 36-member policy-making Council of the Authority.

Other topics before the nineteenth session include recommendations from the Finance Committee on measures for the recovery of the rising costs associated with the administration and supervision of exploration contracts. 

The session will also examine revisions to the Regulations on Prospecting and Exploration of Polymetallic Nodules adopted by the Authority in 2000 to bring them in line with the 2010 Regulations for Prospecting and Exploration for Polymetallic Sulphides. 

For updated releases on the Authority’s 19th Session, click its Press page.