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Agreement on the Organization for Indian Ocean Marine Affairs
Cooperation

17 September 1990

The Contracting States,

Being coastal and hinterland States of the Indian Ocean;

Bearing in mind the resources of the Indian Ocean and this
potential for contributing to the economic and-social
development of the States of the region, and for promoting
co-operations among them as well as between them and other
States, in the light of the new ocean regime embodied in the
United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea:

Reaffirming their commitment to the peaceful development and
rational management of the Indian Ocean;

Recalling the First Conference on Economic, Scientific and
Technical Co-operation Marine Affairs in the Indian Ocean, in
the context of the new ocean regime, held at the ministerial
level in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in 1987, and the progress achieved
thereafter in such co-operation;

Considering it desirable that the principles applicable to such
co-operation be formally recognized.

Hereby agree as follows:

I. DEFINITIONS

Article 1

Definitions

For the purposes of this Agreement:

"coastal State of the Indian Ocean" means a State the coast of
which borders on, or is contained within, the Indian ocean or
the adjacent seas or gulfs thereof;

"hinterland State", means a State which is immediately adjacent
to a coastal State of the Indian Ocean;

"land-locked State" shall have the same meaning as in the United
Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea;

"geographically disadvantaged State" shall have the same meaning
as in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea;

"active in marine affairs in the Indian Ocean" means having
substantial marine affairs activities in the Indian ocean or its
adjacent seas or gulfs "

II. GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 2

Establishment

l. The Organization for Indian Ocean Marine Affairs Co-operation
(IOMAC) hereinafter referred to as the "Organization", is hereby
established.

2. The headquarters of the Organization shall be in Colombo, Sri
Lanka.

Article 3

Objectives

The objectives of the Organization shall be:

(a) to create an awareness regarding the Indian ocean, its
resources and potential for the development of the States of the
region, and promoting co-operation among them, as well as
between them and other States, bearing in mind the ocean regime
embodied in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea;

(b) to provide a forum where the coastal and hinterland States
of the Indian Ocean and other interested States could consider,
examine and review the economic uses of the Indian Ocean, its
resources and related activities, including those undertaken
within the framework of intergovernmental organizations, and to
identify fields in which they could benefit from enhanced
international co-operation, co-ordination and concerted action;

(c) to enhance the economic and social development of the
coastal and hinterland States of the Indian Ocean through
integration of ocean-related activities in their respective
development processes, and to further a policy of integrated
ocean management through regular and continuing dialogue and
co-operative international and regional action with particular
emphasis on technical co-operation among developing countries.

Article 4

Principles and fields of co-operation

1. Principles of co-operation in marine affairs in the Indian
Ocean shall be:

(a) optimization of the utilization of the resources of the
Indian Ocean for the benefit of the States of the Indian Ocean;

(b) development of national capabilities in marine affairs with
a view to promoting self-reliance in ocean management;

(c) enhancement of co-operation with other States;

(d) establishment and maintenance of effective cooperation with
international, governmental, and non-governmental organizations,
agencies and other entities active in marine affairs; and

(e) due regard to the rights and needs of the land-locked and
geographically disadvantaged Member States recognised in the new
ocean regime.

2. Fields of co-operation in marine affairs in the Indian Ocean
Shall be:

(a) marine science, ocean services and marine technology;

(b) living resources;

(c) non-living resources;

(d) ocean law, policy and management;

(e) marine transport and communications;

(f) marine environment; and

(g) other fields relevant to co-operation in marine affairs.

III. INSTITUTIONAL PROVISIONS

Article 5

Membership

Any coastal or hinterland State of the Indian Ocean may become a
Member of the Organization by becoming a party to this
Agreement.

Article 6

Structure of the Organization

The Organization shall have the following principal bodies:

(a) the Conference;

(b) the Committee; and

(c) the Secretariat.

Article 7

The Conference

Composition

1. The Conference shall be composed of representatives at a
ministerial or equivalent level of all the members of the
organization.

Functions

2. The Conference shall:

(a) establish policies and principles which shall govern the
programs and activities of the Organization;

(b) elect the members of the Committee of the Organization in
accordance with the provisions of article 8, paragraph 1, below;

(c) appoint the Secretary General of the Organization;

(d) receive and consider the reports of the Committees and of
the Secretary General;

(e) approve the budget and accounts of the Organization for each
financial period;

(f) approve proposals for programmes and activities of the
Organization;

(g) establish such subsidiary bodies as it may deem necessary;

(h) examine disputes that may arise concerning the
interpretation or application of this Agreement and make such
recommendations, and if necessary establish such procedures, as
it may deem appropriate with a view to their so1ution;

(i) establish its rules of procedure except as otherwise
provided in this Agreement;

(j) establish the financial regulations of the Organization;

(k) establish the staff regulations of the Organization and
provide for conditions of service consistent as far as possible
with those of other international organizations;

(l) exercise such other functions as may be permissible under
this Agreement.

Meetings and procedure

3. The Conference shall meet in regular session once every two
years.

4. The Conference shall meet in special session whenever a
majority of its Members or the Committee requests the convening
of a special session.

5. A quorum for meetings of the Conference shall be two thirds
of the Members of the Organization.

6. Each Member shall have one vote.

7. The Conference shall endeavour to reach its decisions by
consensus. Where consensus is not possible, decisions of the
Conference shall unless otherwise provided in this Agreement, be
made by a majority of the Members present and voting.

8. The Conference shall at each regular session elect from
amongst the Members, its President and Vice-Presidents. They
shall hold office until the election of their successors at the
next regular session of the Conference.

9. Representative of Governments not Members of the
Organization, representatives of the United Nations and the
appropriate agencies and bodies of the United Nations,
representatives of such other international and national
governmental or non-governmental organizations as the Conference
may deem appropriate and experts in fields of interest to the
Conference may be invited to attend meetings of the Conference
as observers. If one third of the Members of the Organization
objects to the invitation of an observer to the Conference that
observer shall not be invited thereafter.

l0. Sessions of the Conference shall be held at the headquarters
of the Organization unless the Conference decides otherwise.

Article 8

The Committee

Composition

1. The Conference shall determine the size and elect the members
of the Committee, from amongst the Members of the Organization
and shall endeavour to ensure that the major geographical areas
and the principal ocean-related interests (namely, land-locked,
geographically disadvantaged, mainland, coastal and
archipelagic) shall be represented in the Committee.

Functions

2. The Committee, which shall be the executive body of the
Organization, shall:

(a) provide the necessary policy guidance for the implementation
of the Programme of Co-operation and Plan of Action of the
Organization, and for the furthering of co-operation through the
framework of the Organization;

(b) consider the implementation of decisions taken by the
Conference;

(c) supervise the administration and finances of the
Organization;

(d) submit to the Conference, for its approval, the budget
estimates and accounts of the Organization, together with
comment and recommendations;

(e) submit to the Conference, for its approval, proposals for
programmes and activities of the Organization;

(f) authorize the Secretary General to take whatever steps this
Committee considers necessary for achieving the objectives of
this Organization;

(g) establish its rules of procedure except as otherwise
provided in this Agreement; and

(h) exercise such other functions as may be referred to it by
the Conference.

Meetings and Procedure

3. The Committee shall meet in regular session once a year.

4. The Committee shall meet in a special session whenever a
majority of the members of the Committee requests the convening
of a special session.

5. A quorum for meetings of the Committee shall be two thirds of
the members of the Committee.

6. The Committee shall elect a Chairman and a Vice-Chairman.

7. Members of the Organization not elected to the Committee may
participate at its meetings without a vote.

8. The Committee shall endeavour to reach its decisions by
consensus. Where consensus is not possible, decisions of the
Committee shall, unless otherwise provided in this Agreement, be
made by a majority of its members present and voting.

9. Representatives of Governments not Members of the
Organization, representatives of the United Nations and the
appropriate agencies and bodies of the United Nations,
representatives of such other international and national
governmental and non-governmental organisation - as the
Committee may deem appropriate and experts in fields of interest
to this Committee - may be invited to attend meetings of the
Committee as observers. If one third of the Members of the
Organization objects to the invitation of an observer to the
Committee that observer shall not be invited thereafter.

Article 9

The Secretariat

l. The Secretariat shall be composed of the Secretary-General,
who shall be the chief administrative officer of the
Organization, and such staff as the Organization may require.

2. The Secretary-General shall be appointed by the Conference
for a period of four years, on such terms as the Conference
shall determine, and shall be eligible for reappointment.

3. The Secretary-General shall, as chief administrative officer,
be responsible under the guidance of the Committee for the
administration of the Organization and its programmes. He shall
ensure that this Organization shall be an effective and dynamic
channel of co-operation in marine affairs in the Indian Ocean.

The Secretary-General shall:

(a) serve as Secretary of the Conference and of the Committees;

b) report to the Conference and to the Committees on the
administration of the programmes and activities of the
Organization;

(c) report to the Conference and the Committee on the financial
and other resources available to the Organization;

(d) having regard to the importance of ensuring efficiency and
equitable geographical representation, appoint such staff as may
be necessary for the proper functioning of the Secretariat;

(e) prepare and submit to the Committee the budget estimates and
accounts of the Organization and proposals for programmes and
activities for the consideration of the Committee;

(f) perform such other tasks as say be entrusted to him by this
Conference or the Committee.

4. The Secretary-General shall be responsible to the Committee
in the performance of his functions.

Article 10

Legal status

The Organization shall have juridical personality and the
capacity necessary for the performance of its functions and, in
particular, to contract, to acquire and dispose of movable and
immovable property and to institute legal proceedings.

Article 11

Facilities, privileges and immunities

l.. Each Member of the Organization shall accord to the
Organization, its representatives, officials and consultants
such facilities, privileges and immunities as it accords to
intergovernmental organizations of a similar nature.

2. The Organization shall conclude a headquarters agreement with
the Government of Sri Lanka. Until such time as a headquarters
agreement is concluded, the Government of Sri Lanka shall accord
to the Organization, its representatives, officials and
consultants such facilities, privileges and immunities as it
accords to intergovernmental organizations of a similar nature.

Article 12

Relations with other organizations

The Organization shall establish effective relations and
co-operate closely with the United Nations and the appropriate
agencies and bodies of the United Nations as well as with other
governmental and non-governmental organizations, agencies and
institutes that are active in marine affairs.

IV. RESOURCES

Article 13

Resources

l.. The resources of the Organization shall include:

(a) the financial contributions of the Members of the
Organization in accordance with paragraph 2 of this article;

(b) such additional financial contributions as Members may wish
to make to ensure that the programmes and activities of the
Organization proceed on a sound financial basis;

(c) other funds whose receipt is consistent with the purposes of
the Organization as determined by the Secretary-General in
consultation, where necessary, with the Committee; and

(d) contributions of a non-financial nature whose receipt is
consistent with the purposes of the Organization as determined
by the Secretary General in consultation where necessary, with
the Committee.

2. The financial contributions of the Members of the
Organization shall consist of a yearly contribution from each
Member made in United States dollars as follows:

(a) a sum arrived at by dividing fifty per cent of the required
and approved budget of the Organization equally amongst all the
Members of the Organization; and

(b) an additional sum, the amount of which shall be determined
periodically by the Secretariat and approved by the Committee,
to meet its share of the remainder of the required and approved
budget. Such amount shall be calculated on the basis of the
rates of assessment applicable in the United Nations, to the
Members of the Organization with respect to their contributions
to the regular budget of the United Nations.

Provided that the contributions, under subparagraphs (a) and (b)
above, of any Member of the Organization shall not in the
aggregate exceed $30,000 a year for the first financial period
of the Organization and, thereafter, such fixed annual sum for
each subsequent financial periods as the Conference shall
determine.

3. A Member which is in arrears in the payment of its
contributions under paragraph 2 above to the budget of the
Organization to the extent that the amount of its arrears is
equivalent to or exceeds the sum of its required contributions
under paragraph 2 above, for the two preceding calendar years,
shall cease to be entitled to vote in the Conference and to be
represented in the Committee.

The Conference may nevertheless permit such a Member to vote if
it is satisfied that the failure to pay is due to conditions
beyond the control of the Member.

Article 14

Management of resources

l. The Conference and the Committee shall at each of its
sessions review the status of the resources of the Organization
and shall make such recommendations to the Members of the
Organization as may be deemed appropriate to ensure that timely
and adequate resources are always available to the Organization
and its programmes, and that a reasonable balance between such
resources and the programmes and activities of the Organization
is maintained.

2. The resources of the Organization shall be administered on a
sound economic and financial basis.

3 Rules for the receipt, custody and expenditure of the
financial and non-financial resources of the Organization and
for the auditing of its accounts shall be established by the
Secretary General with the approval of this Committee.

V. FINAL PROVISIONS

Article 15

Signature, ratification, accession

l. Any coastal or hinterland State of the Indian Ocean may
become a party to this Agreement by

(a) signing this Agreement subject to ratification, acceptance
or approval and, thereafter, depositing an instrument of
ratification, acceptance or approval; or

(b) acceding to this Agreement

2. This Agreement shall be open for signature at the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs, Dar-Es-Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania, and
at the Secretariat of IOMAC, in Colombo, Sri Lanka, until its
entry into force

3 Instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession
shall be deposited with the Government of Sri Lanka

Article 16

Entry into force

l. This Agreement shall enter into force on the thirtieth day
after eight States have become parties to this Agreement in
accordance with article 15

2. For each State depositing an instrument of ratification,
acceptance, approval or accession after the entry into force of
this Agreement, this Agreement shall enter into force on the
thirtieth day after such deposit.

Article 17

Amendment

l.. Any party to this Agreement may propose an amendment to this
Agreement

2. The text of the proposed amendment shall be communicated by
the Secretary-General to all the parties to this Agreement at
least six months in advance of consideration of the proposed
amendment by the Conference.

3. If approved by a two-thirds majority in the Conference, the
proposed amendment shall, nevertheless, only enter into force
for all parties to this Agreement on the thirtieth day after
deposit of instruments of acceptance or approval of the proposed
amendment by two thirds of the parties to this Agreement

Article 18

Withdrawal from the Organization

l. Any Member of the Organization may withdraw from this
Agreement and in doing so, from its Membership in the
Organization by giving written notice of withdrawal to the
depositary of this Agreement and to the Secretary-General.

2. The withdrawal shall take effect six months after the date of
receipt of the notification by the depositary.

3. A Member withdrawing from the Organization shall continue to
be responsible for the obligations incurred within the period of
its Membership.

Article 19

Dissolution of the Organization

l. The Conference may, by a two thirds majority of its Members,
resoIve that the Organization shall be dissolved.

2. On the endorsement of such a resolution by two thirds of the
States parties to this Agreement in notifications addressed to
the President of the Conference the necessary steps shall be
taken by the Conference for the dissolution of the Organization.
These steps shall include the establishment by the Conference of
a committee to advise the Conference, in consultation with the
Committee and the Secretary-General, on the manner in which the
assets and obligations of the Organization should be liquidated
prior to its dissolution.

3. The Conferences shall, at this appropriate stage, adopt a
final declaration stating that on a specified date the
Organization shall be deemed dissolved. The declaration shall be
communicated by the Presidents of the Conference to the Members
of the Organization and to the depositary of this Agreement.

Article 20

Depositary

The two original copies of this Agreement shall be deposited
with the Government of Sri Lanka which will be the depositary of
this Agreement in accordance with the Vienna Convention on the
Law of Treaties.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the undersigned, being duly authorized
thereto by their respective Governments, have signed this
Agreement

DONE at Arusha, the United Republic of Tanzania, in two copies
in the English language this seventh day of September one
thousand nine hundred and ninety.