The United Nations 1982 Convention on the Law of Sea, established an independent Judicial body called the “ The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS)”. In November 1994, Singapore became a member of this convention. At present, the convention comprises of a total of 167 parties out of which one is the European Union as well.
In a recent move to demonstrate their commitment to adherence to International Law and order at sea, Singapore has allowed ITLOS to use Singapore as a venue or court to peacefully resolve disputes relating to laws of the sea.
On 31st August, Ng How Yue, permanent secretary to State and ITLOS president Vladimir Golitsyn signed a joint declaration. The joint declaration stipulates that Singapore shall appropriately host and support the tribunal to function, sit and help resolve, or exercise its functions in the city-state.
Singapore’s minister for law and foreign affairs, Mr. K. Shanmugam said: “The joint declaration is a clear endorsement of Singapore as a neutral venue for the effective settlement of international disputes.”