A seabed scramble: opportunities and overlaps on the outer continental shelf in the Asia-Pacific
Early 2009 saw what has been characterised as an enormous "land grab" as coastal States around the world raced to confirm their entitlements to vast swathes of seabed far out to sea.2If it was indeed a "land grab" it was an odd one as no land territory was in fact involved. This scenario arose from the 13 May 2009 deadline applicable to many, though not all, coastal States for the submission of information in respect of the outer limits of areas of continental shelf located seaward of 200 nautical miles (nm)" from the baselines along their coasts. Such areas of continental shelf located beyond the 200nm limit of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) are generally termed the 'outer' or 'extended' continental shelf. Such submissions of information are made to the relevant United Nations (UN) specialist body, the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS).