Pacific encouraged to meet international maritime obligations
Friday, 17 July 2009

The lack of political commitment coupled with lack of resources, expertise and awareness have been attributed to the delay in the implementation of international maritime conventions that will make certain that domestic security challenges in the maritime sector are met in the region.


Fred Amoa, Hon. Fielakepa and Tufuga Fagaloa Tufuga at the 4th Meeting of PIMLA in Nuku’alofa, Tonga

"Once you have all the international conventions and instruments incorporated into domestic laws, you can then have the legal framework at home to meet your obligations and address issues like security, port and maritime challenges," said Fred Amoa, the President of the Pacific International Maritime Law Association (PIMLA).

PIMLA held its Fourth Annual General meeting this week in the Kingdom of Tonga to discuss gaps in legislations and frameworks in countries in the Pacific and the reasons why they exist.

"There is a need for Pacific island countries to be more proactive in living up to its international obligations as emphasized by the Baron Fialakepa and that we need to recognize that many countries in the region lack the capacity to carry out their obligations," Mr Amoa said.

In this regard, PIMLA has considered regional cooperation to assist individual countries to overcome these difficulties.

At the meeting PIMLA looked at the limitations on the ability of states to make and enforce laws.

PIMLA will work on ensuring legislative competence to make and apply laws over areas of jurisdiction, as well as provide the power to relevant authorities to actually make arrests.

The association, which has 21 specially trained maritime lawyers, hopes to raise awareness on the need to implement international maritime conventions into domestic laws.


Last Updated ( Friday, 17 July 2009 )
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