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U.S. Department of State

Department Seal

Notice to Research Vessel Operators No. 65

Subject: Establishment of USSR Economic Zone
Released by the Department of State, Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, May 14, 1984.

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The Soviet Union established an Economic Zone on 29 February 1984. Jurisdiction will be exercised over scientific research in the zone, which extends from the base line used to determine the USSR territorial sea to a seaward distance of 200 miles. The complete text of the Decree (No. 137) is enclosed.

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DECREE OF THE PRESIDIUM OF THE SUPREME SOVIET OF THE U.S.S.R.

(137) On the Economic Zone of the U.S.S.R.

In order to conserve and optimally use the living and other resources and to protect other economic interests of the U.S.S.R. in the waters adjacent to the coast of the U.S.S.R., taking into account the relevant provisions of the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea, aimed at establishing a uniform regime of economic zones, and striving to promote the implementation of these provisions, the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. decrees:

1. In the waters that are beyond the territorial waters (territorial sea) of the U.S.S.R. and adjacent to it, including the areas around islands belonging to the U.S.S.R., a U.S.S.R. economic zone is established, the outer limit of which extends 200 nautical miles from the same baselines from which the breadth of the territorial waters (territorial sea) of the U.S.S.R. is measured.

Delimitation of the economic zone between the U.S.S.R. and states, the coasts of which are opposite the U.S.S.R. coast, or adjacent to it, is carried out, taking into account U.S.S.R. laws, by way of an agreement based on international law, in order to achieve an equitable solution.

2. In its economic zone as provided for in article 1 of this Decree, the U.S.S.R. shall exercise:

1) creation and use of artificial islands, installations and structures;
2) marine research;
3) protection and conservation of the marine environment;

The rights and jurisdiction referred to in this article are exercised in regard to the seabed of the economic zone and its subsoil in accordance with U.S.S.R. legislation on the continental shelf of the U.S.S.R.

3. The U.S.S.R. exercises the rights resulting from its primary interest in the stock of anadromous fish that originate in its rivers, and the primary responsibility for them.

Competent Soviet authorities provide for the conservation of the stocks of these anadromous fish by adopting appropriate measures and establishing rules governing their fishery, setting a limit to the allowable catch, both inside the economic zone and outside it.

The U.S.S.R. provides for the implementation of the measures and regulations which concern the stocks of anadromous fish outside its economic zone, on the basis of agreements between the U.S.S.R. and other interested states.

Other states may fish for the anadromous fish that originate in U.S.S.R. rivers, beyond the outer limit of the U.S.S.R. economic zone, on the basis of agreements between the U.S.S.R. and other states establishing procedures and conditions for such fishery with due account of the requirements for the conservation of these species, and the U.S.S.R.'s demand for such fish.

The procedures and conditions for utilizing and protecting the anadromous stocks originating in U.S.S.R. rivers are determined by the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R.

4. In the U.S.S.R. economic zone all states, whether coastal or land-locked, enjoy, provided they observe the provisions of this Decree, other relevant U.S.S.R. laws, and the universally recognized norms of international law, freedom of navigation and overflights, the laying of submarine cables and pipelines and other internationally lawful uses of the sea, related to these freedoms.

5. The U.S.S.R. shall ensure optimal exploitation of fish and other living resources in its economic zone by implementing proper conservation and management measures, taking into account the most reliable scientific data, and, in appropriate cases, in cooperation with competent international organizations.

Specifically to this end, the competent Soviet authorities shall determine each year the annual allowable catch for each species of fish and other natural resources, and the part of this catch which may be harvested by foreign states, and also shall take measures to ensure rational fishing, conservation and reproduction of natural resources and their protection, including inspection, detention and seizure of vessels.

The procedure and conditions for utilizing and protecting fish and other living resources of the U.S.S.R. economic zone are determined by the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R.

6. Harvesting fish and other living resources, as well as research, exploratory fishing and other related operations, hereinafter called "fisheries," may be performed inside the U.S.S.R. economic zone by foreign juridical and natural persons only on the basis of international agreements or other arrangements between the U.S.S.R. and corresponding foreign states.

The foreign juridical and natural persons engaged in fisheries in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, in accordance with part one of this article, must observe the measures for the conservation of living resources and other provisions and conditions established by this Decree, by other relevant U.S.S.R. laws and by regulations adopted on the basis of such laws.

7. In its economic zone, the U.S.S.R. has the exclusive right to construct, authorize and regulate the construction, operation and utilization of any artificial islands, as well as any installations and structures intended for scientific research in its economic zone, for exploration and development of its natural resources and for other economic purposes. This right shall also apply to the construction, operation and utilization of installations and structures which may interfere with the exercise of the U.S.S.R.'s rights in the zone.

The U.S.S.R. has exclusive jurisdiction over these artificial islands, installations and structures, including jurisdiction over customs, tax, sanitary and immigration laws and regulations, as well as laws and regulations concerning safety.

Where necessary, safety zones shall be established around these artificial islands, installations and structures, which shall extend no more than 500 meters from each point of their outer edge, unless otherwise authorized by generally recognized international standards or recommended by a competent international organization. The competent Soviet authorities shall determine the appropriate measures to be taken in these zones to ensure the safety of both navigation and the artificial islands, installations and structures.

Soviet organizations, foreign states, foreign nationals (corporate and individual) responsible for the maintenance and operation of the aforesaid artificial islands, installations and structures, must ensure that the permanent facilities for warning of their presence be maintained in good condition. Abandoned or disused installations, facilities and equipment must be removed as soon as possible and to an extent as not to interfere with navigation and fisheries or threaten the marine environment with pollution.

The creation of artificial islands, the erection of installations and structures, the establishment of safety zones around them, as well as the complete or partial removal of these installations and structures, shall be reported in the "Notices to Mariners."

8. Marine research in the U.S.S.R. economic zone shall be carried out in accordance with U.S.S.R. laws and in compliance with international agreements to which the U.S.S.R. is a party.

Foreign states and competent international organizations may conduct marine research in the U.S.S.R. economic zone only with the consent of the competent Soviet authorities. Under ordinary circumstances, the competent Soviet authorities shall give their consent to foreign states to conduct marine research in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, provided that this research is carried out exclusively for peaceful purposes and to expand scientific knowledge of the marine environment for the good of mankind.

Such consent may be refused if the marine research:

1) is of immediate significance for the exploration or exploitation of the natural resources of the U.S.S.R. economic zone, whether living or non-living;
2) includes drilling of the seabed of the economic zone, using explosives or introducing harmful substances in the marine environment;
3) includes the construction, operation or utilization of artificial islands, installations and structures.

Foreign states and competent international organizations planning marine research operations in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, shall submit a complete report on the planned research to competent Soviet authorities no less than six months prior to the date projected for the beginning of such operations.

In the event the information submitted in accordance with part four of this article is imprecise, or if the foreign state and competent international organization conducting the research have unfulfilled obligations pending with the U.S.S.R., resulting from marine research carried out earlier, the competent Soviet authorities may refuse to approve such research.

9. In conducting marine research in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, foreign states and competent international organizations shall undertake:

1) to ensure that Soviet representatives participate in the marine research, especially aboard research vessels and other devices or scientific research installations;
2) to submit to the competent Soviet authorities, at their request, interim reports as soon as practicable and final reports and conclusions upon completion of the research;
3) to give the competent Soviet authorities, at their request, access to all data and samples obtained in the course of marine research operations, and also to provide them with data from which copies can be made, and samples that can be separated [divided?] without damaging their scientific value;
4) to provide the competent Soviet authorities, at their request, with information containing the analysis and assessment of such data, samples and research results;
5) not to interfere with the exercise of sovereign rights and jurisdiction provided for in articles 2 and 3 of this Decree;
6) to inform immediately the competent Soviet authorities of any substative changes in the research program;
7) to remove as soon as possible, upon completion of research, the scientific research installations and equipment, unless otherwise agreed.

10. Marine research conducted in the U.S.S.R. economic zone not in accordance with information provided according to article 8 of this Decree, or in violation of the provisions of article 9 of this Decree, may be suspended by the competent Soviet authorities. It may be resumed only after the violations committed have been eliminated and guarantees have been received that such violations will not occur in the future.

Marine research operations conducted in the U.S.S.R. economic zone without the consent of the competent Soviet authorities, or digressing from the information provided under article 8 of this Decree to such an extent that it entails a serious change in the original research project, shall be immediately discontinued.

11. The terms and conditions for conducting marine research, creating artificial islands, constructing, maintaining, operating, protecting and removing installations, structures and safety zones around them, as well as issuing permits for executing all the above-listed operations in the U.S.S.R. economic zone shall be determined by the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R.

12. Prevention, reduction and control of pollution of the marine environment, induced by or connected with the activities taking place in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, shall be carried out in accordance with U.S.S.R. laws and with international agreements to which the U.S.S.R. is a party.

13. With regard to particular, clearly defined areas of the U.S.S.R. economic zone where technical reasons related to oceanographic and ecological conditions, to the utilization of these areas or the protection of their resources, and to the particular nature of the maritime traffic in these areas, require the establishment of special mandatory measures to prevent pollution from vessels, such measures, including navigational practices, may be determined by the U.S.S.R. Council of Ministers in the areas defined by it. The boundaries of these particular areas are published in the "Notices to Mariners."

14. The competent Soviet authorities, as defined by U.S.S.R. laws, may adopt regulations to prevent, reduce and control pollution of the marine environment, as well as to ensure safety of navigation, and may provide for the implementation of these regulations in ice-covered regions with special natural characteristics, where pollution of the marine environment could cause severe harm to the ecological balance or irreversibly disrupt it.

15. Where there are clear grounds to believe that a vessel sailing in the territorial waters (territorial sea) of the U.S.S.R. or the U.S.S.R. economic zone has violated in that zone the laws provided for in articles 12-14 of this Decree, or the applicable international rules to prevent, reduce and control pollution of the marine environment from ships, the competent Soviet authorities may:

1) demand from said ship information necessary to determine whether a violation has occurred;
2) inspect the vessel in connection with the given violation if it has led to a large discharge of pollutants, significantly polluting or threatening to pollute the marine environment, and the vessel has refused to give the necessary information, or this information contradicts obvious facts.

Where there is clear and objective evidence that a vessel sailing in the territorial waters (territorial sea) of the U.S.S.R. or in the U.S.S.R. economic zone has committed in this zone a violation of the laws and regulations referred to in part one of this article, the discharge of pollutants which resulted in severe damage or the threat of severe damage to the U.S.S.R. coast, related interests or to any resources of the territorial waters (territorial sea) of the U.S.S.R. or its economic zone, proceedings may be initiated regarding this violation, including detention of the vessel, in accordance with U.S.S.R. laws.

When a foreign vessel is in a Soviet port, the competent Soviet authorities may institute proceedings in respect of any violation committed by the vessel in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, of the laws and regulations indicated in part one of this article.

The procedures for the competent Soviet authorities to implement the rights provided for in this article shall be determined by the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R.

16. Dumping of waste or other materials and objects within the U.S.S.R. economic zone shall be carried out only with the permission and under the control of the competent Soviet authorities. The procedure and conditions for dumping and the issuance of this permission shall be determined by the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R.

17. Where a collision of vessels, stranding or other marine accident that occurs in the U.S.S.R. economic zone or beyond its outer limits, or acts related to such accident result in serious harmful consequences for the U.S.S.R. coastline and related interests, including fishing, the competent Soviet authorities have the right, in accordance with international law, to adopt the necessary measures, proportionate to the actual or threatened damage, in order to protect it from pollution or the threat of pollution.

18. Where there is sufficient grounds to believe that a foreign vessel has violated the provisions of this Decree or other relevant U.S.S.R. laws and attempts to escape, the right to pursue the vessel for the purpose of apprehending and subsequently calling the transgressor to account shall be carried out under procedures established by the competent Soviet authorities. Pursuit must begin when the vessel-transgressor or one of its launches is found inside the U.S.S.R. economic zone and has been signaled to halt, and terminate when the pursued vessel enters the territorial waters (territorial sea) of its own country or a third state.

19. An administrative penalty in the form of a fine of up to 10,000 rubles shall be imposed at the site of detection upon persons guilty of:

1) unlawful exploration or exploitation of natural resources in the U.S.S.R. economic zone;
2) unlawful dumping within the U.S.S.R. economic zone from vessels or other maritime craft, from aircraft or from artificial islands, installations and structures, of substances harmful to human health or to living marine resources, or other wastes, materials and objects which may damage or interfere with the lawful uses of the sea;
3) polluting the marine environment by unlawful discharge in the U.S.S.R. economic zone from vessels or other maritime craft, from aircraft or from artificial islands, installations and structures, of substances harmful to human health or to living marine resources, or of mixtures containing such substances in amounts above the established standard, or of other wastes, materials and objects which may damage recreational areas or interfere with other lawful uses of the sea;
4) polluting the marine environment directly as a result of drilling for mineral resources of the seabed or any other exploration or development operations in the U.S.S.R. economic zone;
5) other violations of regulations to prevent, reduce and control pollution of the marine environment in the U.S.S.R. economic zone;
6) conducting marine research in the U.S.S.R. economic zone without the consent of competent Soviet authorities;
7) creating artificial islands, building installations and structures in the U.S.S.R. economic zone, and establishing safety zones around them without proper permission;
8) not providing installations and other structures in the U.S.S.R. economic zone with permanent warning systems, violating regulations for maintaining these systems in working condition and regulations for removing the installations and structures which have ceased functioning, and also in violating other provisions of this Decree, such as those connected with fulfilling the obligations ensuing from international treaties to which the U.S.S.R. is a party.

Where these violations cause extensive damage or entail other severe consequences, or are committed repeatedly, the guilty persons shall be subject to a fine of up to 100,000 rubles, imposed by the regional (municipal) people's court. In the event of violations provided for in paragraphs 1, 6 and 7 of part one of this article, the court may, as an additional administrative penalty, seize the vessel, installation, fishing gear, equipment, instruments and other objects used by the transgressor, as well as all unlawful proceeds.

In the event of arrest or detention of a foreign vessel, the appropriate competent Soviet authorities shall promptly notify the flag State of the measures taken and the penalties and punishment imposed. Arrested vessels and their crews shall be freed immediately upon the posting of a reasonable bond or other security.

20. Transgressors against the provisions of article 19 of this Decree shall bear administrative responsibility for their actions, provided these violations, by their nature, do not entail criminal responsibility under the U.S.S.R. laws in force.

21. The application of administrative measures as provided for by this Decree does not relieve transgressors from compensating the damage caused to living and other resources of the U.S.S.R. economic zone, in accordance with the U.S.S.R. laws in force.

22. The procedure for protecting the U.S.S.R. economic zone shall be established by the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R.

23. This Decree is to enter into force on March 1, 1984.

24. The following are no longer in force:

Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. of December 10, 1976, "On Interim Measures to Conserve Living Resources and Regulate Fisheries in the Waters Adjacent to the Coast of the U.S.S.R." (Gazette [Vedomosti] of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R., 1977, No. 50, p. 728); 1982, No. 15, p. 238).

Resolution of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. of March 22, 1977, "On Interim Measures to Conserve Living Resources and Regulate Fisheries in the Waters Adjacent to the Coast of the U.S.S.R." (Gazette [Vedomosti] of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R., 1977, No. 13, p. 217).

25. The Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R. is to bring the decisions of the U.S.S.R. Government into line with this Decree.

First Deputy Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R.

V. KUZNETSOV.

Secretary of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. T. MENTESHASHVILI

Moscow, the Kremlin, February 28, 1984

No. 10864-X.

[end of document]

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