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II.5.180 (CSC, 1972) INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION FOR SAFE CONTAINERS, 1972, AS AMENDED

The Ratification of Maritime Conventions

Chapter I.5.180

INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION FOR SAFE CONTAINERS, 1972, AS AMENDED

Note: The present text incorporates the original text as modified by the following amendments:

  Date of entry
  into force
—1981 (Annex I) amendments adopted by MSC 01.12.1981
—1983 (Annex I and II) amendments adopted by MSC 01.01.1984
—1991 (Annex I and II) amendments adopted by res. MSC.20(59) 01.01.1993
—2010 (December) (Annex I, II, III) adopted by res. MSC.310(88) 01.01.2012
—2013 (December) (Annexes I, II and III) adopted by res. MSC.355(92) 01.07.2014
ADOPTED: Done at Geneva, 2 December 1972
REFERENCE: CSC 1972
ENTERED INTO FORCE: 6 September 1977
DEPOSITARY: IMO, London
SECRETARY: IMO, London

IMPLEMENTATION

SIGNATURE, RATIFICATION, ACCEPTANCE, APPROVAL AND ACCESSION

Article VII

1. The present Convention shall be open for signature until 15 January 1973 at the Office of the United Nations at Geneva and subsequently from 1 February 1973 until 31 December 1973 inclusive at the Headquarters of the Organisation at London by all States Members of the United Nations or Members of any of the Specialized Agencies or of the International Atomic Energy Agency or Parties to the Statute of the International Court of Justice, and by any other State invited by the General Assembly of the United Nations to become a Party to the Convention.

2. The present Convention is subject to ratification, acceptance or approval by States which have signed it.

3. The present Convention shall remain open for accession by any State referred to in paragraph 1.

4. Instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of the Organisation (hereinafter referred to as “the Secretary-General”).

ENTRY INTO FORCE

Article VIII

1. The present Convention shall enter into force twelve months from the date of the deposit of the tenth instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession.

2. For each State ratifying, accepting, approving or acceding to the present Convention after the deposit of the tenth instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession, the present Convention shall enter into force twelve months after the date of the deposit by such State of its instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession.

3. Any State which becomes a Party to the present Convention after the entry into force of an amendment shall, failing an expression of a different intention by that State,

  • (a) be considered as a Party to the Convention as amended; and
  • (b) be considered as a Party to the unamended Convention in relation to any Party to the Convention not bound by the amendment.

DENUNCIATION

Article XI

1. Any Contracting Party may denounce the present Convention by effecting the deposit of an instrument with the Secretary-General. The denunciation shall take effect one year from the date of such deposit with the Secretary-General.

2. A Contracting Party which has communicated an objection to an amendment to the Annexes may denounce the present Convention and such denunciation shall take effect on the date of entry into force of such an amendment.

TERMINATION

Article XII

The present Convention shall cease to be in force if the number of Contracting Parties is less than five for any period of twelve consecutive months.

RESERVATIONS

Article XIV

1. Reservations to the present Convention shall be permitted, excepting those relating to the provisions of Articles I–VI, XIII, the present article and the Annexes, on condition that such reservations are communicated in writing and, if communicated before the deposit of the instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession, are confirmed in that instrument. The Secretary-General shall communicate such reservations to all States referred to in Article VII.

2. Any reservations made in accordance with paragraph 1:

  • (a) modifies for the Contracting Party which made the reservation the provisions of the present Convention to which the reservation relates to the extent of the reservation; and
  • (b) modifies those provisions to the same extent for the other Contracting Parties in their relations with the Contracting Party which entered the reservations.

3. Any Contracting Party which has formulated a reservation under paragraph 1 may withdraw it at any time by notification to the Secretary-General.

PROCEDURE FOR AMENDING THE CONVENTION

Article IX

1. The present Convention may be amended upon the proposal of a Contracting Party by any of the procedures specified in this article.

2. Amendment after consideration in the Organisation:

  • (a) Upon the request of a Contracting Party, any amendment proposed by it to the present Convention shall be considered in the Organisation. If adopted by a majority of two-thirds of those present and voting in the Maritime Safety Committee of the Organisation, to which all Contracting Parties shall have been invited to participate and vote, such amendment shall be communicated to all Members of the Organisation and all Contracting Parties at least six months prior to its consideration by the Assembly of the Organisation. Any Contracting Party which is not a Member of the Organisation shall be entitled to participate and vote when the amendment is considered by the Assembly.
  • (b) If adopted by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting in the Assembly, and if such majority includes a two-thirds majority of the Contracting Parties present and voting, the amendment shall be communicated by the Secretary-General to all Contracting Parties for their acceptance.
  • (c) Such amendment shall come into force twelve months after the date on which it is accepted by two-thirds of the Contracting Parties. The amendment shall come into force with respect to all Contracting Parties except those which, before it comes into force, make a declaration that they do not accept the amendment.

3. Amendment by a Conference:

Upon the request of a Contracting Party concurred in by at least one-third of the Contracting Parties, a Conference to which the States referred to in Article VII shall be invited will be convened by the Secretary-General.

SPECIAL PROCEDURE FOR AMENDING THE ANNEXES

Article X

1. Any amendment to the Annexes proposed by a Contracting Party shall be considered in the Organisation at the request of that Party.

2. If adopted by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting in the Maritime Safety Committee of the Organisation to which all Contracting Parties shall have been invited to participate and to vote, and if such majority includes a two-thirds majority of the Contracting Parties present and voting, such amendment shall be communicated by the Secretary-General to all Contracting Parties for their acceptance.

3. Such an amendment shall enter into force on a date to be determined by the Maritime Safety Committee at the time of its adoption unless, by a prior date determined by the Maritime Safety Committee at the same time, one-fifth or five of the Contracting Parties, whichever number is less, notify the Secretary-General of their objection to the amendment. Determination by the Maritime Safety Committee of the dates referred to in this paragraph shall be by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting, which majority shall include a two-thirds majority of the Contracting Parties present and voting.

4. On entry into force any amendment shall, for all Contracting Parties which have not objected to the amendment, replace and supersede any previous provision to which the amendment refers; an objection made by a Contracting Party shall not be binding on other Contracting Parties as to acceptance of containers to which the present Convention applies.

5. The Secretary-General shall inform all Contracting Parties and Members of the Organisation of any request and communication under this article and the date on which any amendment enters into force.

6. Where a proposed amendment to the Annexes has been considered but not adopted by the Maritime Safety Committee, any Contracting Party may request the convening of a Conference to which the States referred to in Article VII shall be invited. Upon receipt of notification of concurrence by at least one-third of the other Contracting Parties such a Conference shall be convened by the Secretary-General to consider amendments to the Annexes.

DECLARATIONS, RESERVATIONS AND STATEMENTS

Bulgaria

The Instrument of ratification of the People’s Republic of Bulgaria contained the following declarations:

[translation] “The People’s Republic of Bulgaria considers that article VII, which restricts the participation of a number of States in the Convention, is contrary to the generally accepted principle of the sovereign equality of States.

The People’s Republic of Bulgaria considers that the acceptance on its part of article XIII is not to be understood as a change in its position and that a given dispute may be referred to an arbitral tribunal only with the consent of all the parties to the particular dispute.”

Byelorussian SSR

The following statement was made at the time of signature of the Convention:

[translation] “It is the view of the Government of the Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic that the provisions of article VII of the International Convention for Safe Containers restricting participation of some States in the Convention contradict the generally recognized principle of the sovereign equality of States.

As to the provisions of article XIII concerning the settlement of disputes on the interpretation and application of the present Convention through arbitration the Government of the BSSR puts it on record that the acceptance of these provisions must not be interpreted as modifying the view of the BSSR Government that a dispute can be referred to an arbitration tribunal only with the agreement of all parties to a dispute in each particular case.”

This statement was also contained in the instrument of ratification of the Byelorussian SSR.

Canada

The depositary received the following communication dated 4 February 1982 from the Canadian High Commissioners in London:

  • “I have the honour to refer to the Canadian instrument of ratification of the International Convention for Safe Containers which was deposited in London on 19 February 1981. The Convention will therefore enter into force for Canada on 19 February 1982 in accordance with article VIII, paragraph 2.
  • Amendments to Annex I of the Convention were adopted by the Maritime Safety Committee on 1 August 1981 and came into force for contracting parties on 1 December 1981. The Government of Canada supports these amendments but must obtain Parliamentary approval in accordance with Section 8 of the Safe Containers Act, Statutes of Canada 1981–82, Chapter 9 before effect can be given to the amendments in Canadian Law.
  • Accordingly I have been instructed to inform you that the Government of Canada, on becoming a contracting party to the International Convention for Safe Containers, and pursuant to the provisions of article X, paragraph 4, enters an objection to the Amendments to Annex I adopted by the Maritime Safety Committee on 1 August 1981, pending the completion of its domestic legislative procedures. This objection will be withdrawn when Canadian legislative procedures necessary to give effect to these amendments in domestic law have been completed.”

By a communication dated 13 December 1982 this objection was withdrawn.

Chile

The instrument of accession of the Republic of Chile contained the following reservation:

[translation] “ . . . that any amendments which may be made either to the Convention or to its Annexes will not be in force for our country until they have been approved and ratified in accordance with the provisions of our internal legislation.”

Cuba

The instrument of accession of the Republic of Cuba contained the following declarations (in the Spanish language):

[translation] “The Government of the Republic of Cuba considers that the provision of article VII of the International Convention for Safe Containers is discriminatory in nature in that it withholds from a number of States the right of signature and accession, which is contrary to the principle of universality.

The Government of the Republic of Cuba considers, with reference to the rules contained in article XIII of the Convention, that differences arising between Parties should be resolved by direct negotiation through diplomatic channels.”

Czechoslovakia

The following declaration was made at the time of signature of the Convention by the Representative of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic:

  • “The Government of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic considers that the provisions of article VII of the International Convention for Safe Containers, done at Geneva on 2 December 1972, which bar certain States from participation in it, are contrary to the universally recognized principle of the sovereign equality of States.”

The instrument of approval of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic was accompanied by the following declaration (in the English language):

  • “Article VII, paragraph 1 of the said Convention is inconsistent with the generally recognized principle of the sovereign equality of States.”

France

The instrument of approval of the French Republic was accompanied by the following:

(translation) “The French Government, in accordance with the provisions of article XIV, enters a reservation against [that part of] the fourth paragraph of article X which reads as follows: ‘an objection made by the Contracting Party shall not be binding on other Contracting Parties as to acceptance of containers to which the present Convention applies’.

When an objection to an amendment is raised by a Contracting Party, the provisions of that amendment shall not be invoked against the said Party.“

German Democratic Republic

The instrument of accession of the German Democratic Republic was accompanied by the following statements:

  • “The German Democratic Republic considers it necessary to point out that article VII deprives some States of the possibility to become parties to this Convention.”
  • “The Convention regulates questions affecting the interests of all States; therefore it must be open for all States which are guided in their policies by the principles and purposes of the United Nations Charter to become parties to it.”

“With regard to the provisions of article XIII of the Convention dealing with the settlement of disputes concerning the interpretation or application of the Convention by arbitration the German Democratic Republic declares that the acceptance of this provision should not be interpreted in such a way as if the view of the German Democratic Republic changed that a dispute may only be referred to an arbitration tribunal for consideration with the consent of all parties to the dispute.”

The instrument of accession was also accompanied by the following declaration:

“The abbreviated state designation on the registration plates required by the Convention corresponds with the distinguishing sign used to indicate the state of registration of motor vehicles and reads ‘DDR’. The competent authority in the German Democratic Republic for all questions in connexion with this Convention is the DDR Schiffs-Revision und-Klassification (DSRK).”

Romania

The following declaration (in the French language) was made at the time of signature of the Convention by the Representative of the Socialist Republic of Romania:

[translation] “The Government of the Socialist Republic of Romania considers that the provisions of Article VII of the International Convention for Safe Containers, done at Geneva on 2 December 1972, are not consistent with the principle that multilateral international treaties, whose aim and object affect the international community as a whole, should be open to universal participation.”

The instrument of ratification of the Government of the Socialist Republic of Romania was accompanied by the same declaration that was made at the time of signature.

Ukrainian SSR

The following statement was made at the time of signature of the Convention:

[translation] “It is the view of the Government of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic that the provisions of article VII of the International Convention for Safe Containers restricting participation of some States in the Convention contradict the generally recognized principle of the sovereign equality of States.

As to the provisions of article XIII concerning the settlement of disputes on the interpretation and application of the present Convention through arbitration the Government of the Ukrainian SSR puts it on record that the acceptance of these provisions must not be interpreted as modifying the view of the Ukrainian SSR Government that a dispute can be referred to an arbitration tribunal only with the agreement of all parties to a dispute in each particular case.”

This statement was also contained in the instrument of ratification of the Government of the Ukrainian SSR.

U.S.S.R.

The following statement was made at the time of signature of the Convention:

[translation] “It is the view of the Government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics that the provisions of article VII of the International Convention for Safe Containers restricting participation of some States in the Convention contradict the generally recognized principle of the sovereign equality of States.

As to the provisions of article XIII concerning the settlement of disputes on the interpretation and application of the present Convention through arbitration the U.S.S.R. Government puts it on record that the acceptance of those provisions must not be interpreted as modifying the view of the U.S.S.R. Government that a dispute can be referred to an arbitration tribunal only with the agreement of all parties to a dispute in each particular case.”

This statement was also contained in the instrument of ratification of the U.S.S.R.

United Kingdom

The instrument of ratification of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland contains the following:

“ . . . reserving the right not to apply the said Convention in respect of any territory for whose international relations the Government of the United Kingdom is responsible until twelve months after the date on which the Government of the United Kingdom notify the Secretary-General of the Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization that the said Convention shall apply in respect of any such territory.”

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