St Kitts-Nevis initiates maritime boundary delimitation meetings with the Netherlands
The St Kitts and Nevis maritime boundary delimitation team, recently journeyed to the United Kingdom to engage the Netherlands maritime boundary delimitation technical team, in what is likely to be the first of two technical meetings before actual negotiations.
The meeting was held at the Commonwealth Secretariat. The team comprised of three individuals, namely McClean Hobson, director of maritime affairs and chairman of the St Kitts and Nevis maritime boundary delimitation team, Norgen Wilson and Graeme Browne.
According to the chairman, “The meeting was quite fruitful and extremely beneficial to the St Kitts and Nevis team.”
Hobson explained that, before any maritime boundary delimitation negotiations can proceed, it is the norm for each technical team to identify and locate their base points. He further stated that these are the points located on the base line of St Kitts and St Eustatius from which the measurements of the various marine zones (territorial, contiguous, exclusive economic etc.) would start.
“Our team presented 64 base points while the Netherlands presented 43. This was followed by cordial discussions on the identification and location of base points,” he stated. “Ultimately when the discussions were over, both teams were satisfied that we were both coming up with the same base points.”
He stressed that this is certainly a good sign ahead of the second technical meeting, which is expected to take place in the UK by June 2014. He said, by this time, the base points would have been finalized by both teams, setting the stage for the start of the maritime boundary delimitation negotiations in Basseterre, St Kitts, later in 2014.
To conduct maritime boundary delimitation with the neighbouring states, St Kitts and Nevis, with technical assistance from the Commonwealth Secretariat, has a fully trained maritime boundary delimitation team and a maritime boundary technical team.