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Thesis (Master's)

University of Akureyri > Hug- og félagsvísindasvið > Meistaraprófsritgerðir >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/25232

  • Research of legal status and navigation regime of arctic shipping lanes
  • Master's
  • As the thawing of the sea ice within the Arctic Ocean, the Arctic is facing tremendous changes, including environment, economy, industry, culture and many other areas. As the sea ice decreasing, the Arctic region is becoming a “new world” opening its gate to the whole world. The most obvious aspect is about Arctic shipping issues. The Arctic Ocean is locating on special geographical point which closely connecting the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean. Furthermore, the Arctic Ocean has shorter shipping lanes between Asia and Europe compared to the traditional way. Just because of this, the ice-free sea areas make the Arctic shipping lanes becoming available and even frequently used. Considering the great demand of trade between continents, the Arctic passage will play an important role in the near future.
    Because of the unique environment conditions, ships using Arctic passage should rely on the assistance of coastal States. Like the shipping canal and ice-breaker leading. Also the Arctic environment and other aspects are closely linked with coastal States. There are 5 coastal States around the Arctic Ocean. Russia and Canada have the longest coastal lines around Arctic Ocean. In this article, researches are mainly surrounding these two States and the legal documents of these two States will be regarded as important basis.
    The attitudes of Canada and Russia toward the Northwest-passage and Northern Sea Route are very important. It possibly impacts the shipping activities in the Arctic Ocean. More than that, how the domestic regulation will be extended to apply on foreign ships is also relating question.
    The Northwest-passage and Northern Sea Route could be considered as straits used for international navigation. It prefers to apply international navigation institution in Arctic Ocean. Therefore, they need to apply transit passing right or other rights in the Arctic shipping lanes according to the international laws.
    In this article, at first, I will introduce basic information of Arctic shipping lanes. And then current legislation situations of coastal States will follow behind. The legislation situations are mainly reflected from legal documents of Canada and Russia.
    The main question of the article is whether the Arctic shipping lanes could be considered as straits used for international navigation. I will focus on the definition of strait used for international navigation and its application conditions. After that, I try to analysis the two claims from Canada and Russia. Try to analysis whether these two claims are reasonable. The main basis is definition and criteria of the international strait and also international law. And then I try to give an appropriate solution.
    The significance of this topic is the ambiguous legal status and navigation regime of Arctic shipping lanes hindered the development of Arctic passing and global business rising. The Arctic region becomes hot and hot. The development of the Arctic region is now standing on the crisscross. The Arctic shipping lanes issues like a match striking in the dark. It will make the Arctic attractive and glare.

  • Jun 15, 2016
  • http://hdl.handle.net/1946/25232

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