A Joint Venture Agreement for Seabed Mining by Dr. iur. Günther Jaenicke, Dr. iur. Erich Schanze LL.M.,

By Dr. iur. Günther Jaenicke, Dr. iur. Erich Schanze LL.M., Wolfgang Hauser LL.M. (auth.)

The 3rd Uni ted countries convention at the Lawof the ocean is getting ready ideas a long way the institution of a world criminal regime governing the exploration and exploitation of the assets of the overseas seabed. The Draft conference at the legislation of the ocean (Informal textual content) of 27 August 1980 which has up to now been the results of the negotiations through the previous periods of the convention, presents for a so-called "parallel procedure" below which a world "Enterprise" as weIl as nationwide inner most or state-owned businesses can be granted entry to the assets of the foreign seabed lower than the keep watch over of a world Seabed Authority. The Draft conference additionally envisages the condusion of three way partnership agreements among the foreign company and nationwide businesses or consortia, and encourages such cooperation via supply­ ing numerous incentives. Such joint ventures will most likely play a tremendous half in making the overseas firm operative within the early years of its life. on the convention issues were expressed no matter if and whilst the company as a newcomer will be able to begin seabed mining and to compete successfully with the nationwide businesses. The Draft conference offers for a couple of methods and ability to permit the firm to strengthen its technological and monetary functions for deep sea mining as early as possible.

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The place of the principal office should be at the place of incorporation. If the seat is to be selected in the dose vicinity of the mining operation, then the coastal states of the United States, Canada, Mexico or Hawaii are possible places for the principal office. However, one could also consider establishing the principal office at the seat of the Authority, as for example Fiji, Jamaica or Malta, which are presently under consideration. The place of incorporation determines the law applicable to the Joint Venture Agreement (Part c: Article 21).

Article 19: Default and Force Majeure .............. Article 20: Dispute Settlement . . . . . . . . . . Article 21: Applicable Law ........................ Article 22: Renegotiation. . . . . . . . . . . . .. Article 23: Termination and Assignment ............ 40 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 90 General Definitions: 1. Affiliated Party A person shall be considered as an affiliate of another person if the first person, directly or through any third person or persons, controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with, the second person.

From our experience in landbased mining, the Investor will probably not accept a minority capital part in the operation unless it can enter into arewarding position analogous to a service contract. On the other hand, it is likely that the Enterprise will not accept a minority position in an operation conceming the Reserved Area because it would thereby accept a "quasi-contract" and thus undermine the parallel system in favour of private investors (contractors). It is conceivable that the Enterprise might buy the technology through a service contract as is common in petroleum mining and in rare instances of hard mineral mining (in respect to new projects).

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