Agreement On Merchant Shipping Between The Government Of The Republic Of Latvia, The Government Of The Republic Of Estonia And The Government Of The Republic Of Lithuania
The Government of the Republic of Latvia, the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter referred to as the "Contracting Parties"),
Being desirous to support and to develop friendly relations between the Contracting Parties and to enhance their co-operation regularly in the field of maritime relations,
Bearing in mind the principles and norms of international law and taking into account the international obligations of the Contracting Parties,
Being desirous to contribute to the development of commercial exchange between them,
Being desirous to ensure the best maritime navigational co-ordination and to promote safety at sea,
In accordance with the principles of equality, mutual benefit and assistance,
Have agreed as follows:
For the purpose of the present Agreement:
1. The term "vessel of a Contracting Party" means any vessel, which is registered in the Ships Register and flies the flag of a Contracting Party in accordance with its national legislation.
However, this term shall not include:
a) warships and auxiliary ships of the Navy;
b) vessels which are performing administrative or state functions and are operated for non-commercial purposes;
c) fishing vessels;
d) hydrographic and scientific research vessels;
e) pleasure craft used for non-commercial purposes.
2. The term "crew member" means the master or any person employed on board a vessel, who is included in the crew list and who is a holder of one of the seamen's identity documents as referred to in Article 5 of the present Agreement.
3. The term "competent authority of a Contracting Party" means:
a) as regards the Republic of Latvia - the Ministry of Transport or a person or institution authorized by it;
b) as regards the Republic of Estonia - the Ministry of Transport and Communications or a person or institution authorized by it;
c) as regards the Republic of Lithuania - the Ministry of Transport and Communications.
1. The provisions of the present Agreement shall apply to the international shipping between the Contracting Parties and to or from third states.
2. However, the provisions of the present Agreement shall not apply to activities reserved by the national legislation of each of the Contracting Parties for their states flag vessels, including in particular cabotage, towage, pilotage, fishing operations and inland navigation.
3. The present Agreement also shall not apply to the ports and areas of Contracting Parties not open for international shipping.
Treatment to the vessels
1. Each Contracting Party shall grant to the vessels of the other Contracting Parties the same treatment as accorded to its own vessels in respect of the freedom of access to and the use of the ports, as well as to all facilities afforded to shipping and commercial operations for passengers, crew members, cargoes and vessels. In particular this refers to the allocation of berths at piers, loading and unloading facilities and port services, including bunkering facilities.
2. The Contracting Parties shall adopt, within the limits of their respective national legislation, all appropriate measures to facilitate and to expedite maritime traffic, to prevent unnecessary delays of vessels and expedite and simplify as much as possible the carrying out of customs and other formalities required in ports.
1. Each Contracting Party shall recognize the nationality of vessels of the other Contracting Party established by the documents on board such vessels and issued by the relevant authorities of this Contracting Party in accordance with its national legislation.
2. Vessel's documents on board, including documents in relation to the tonnage and the crew issued by or on behalf of the relevant authorities of one Contracting Party, shall be accepted by the relevant authorities of other Contracting Parties. All port charges and fees shall be collected on the basis of these documents.
Seamen's identity documents and Certificates of Competency
1. Each Contracting Party shall recognize the seamen's identity documents, duly issued or recognized by the relevant authorities of the other Contracting Party.
2. Each Contracting Party shall recognize the seamen's Certificates of Competency, as well as shall recognize the Sertificates or Diplomas of maritime training institutions and courses under the International Convention of Standarts of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, as amended in 1995 (STCW 78/95 Convention) duly issued by the relevant institutions of other Contracting Parties.
Seamen's right of temporary stay
During the stay of a vessel of one Contracting Party in a port of any other Contracting Party, crew members of the vessel, whether citizens of any Contracting Party or not, may go ashore for temporary stay in the territory of the port state without visas provided that the ship's master has submitted the crew list to the relevant authorities in accordance with national legislation of the port state and the authorities have approved such stay. Both when going ashore and when returning aboard the vessel, such persons shall comply with the regulatory control.
Seamen's right to transit
1. Holders of seamen's identity documents referred to in Article 5 have the right, regardless to the mode of transport, to enter, to stay temporarily and to leave the territory of any other Contracting Party or pass through its territory either in order to join their vessel, or after signing off to return to their place of residence provided that they have received approval from the relevant authorities of the respective Contracting Party. Such approval shall be granted as quickly as possible.
2. If the holder of a seamen's identity document referred to in Article 5 of the present Agreement is not a citizen of a Contracting Party, the approval referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article shall be issued, provided that he has the right to return to the state which has issued its seamen's identity document.
3. If a stay of a holder of a seamen's identity document referred to in Article 5 in the territory of the other Contracting Party should be prolonged due to the accident, illness or any other matter recognized by the relevant authorities as lawful, the authorities shall prolong such stay upon the submission of written evidence for the period of time thereby requested.
Right to deny entry
Each Contracting Party reserves the right to deny entry into its territory to any person possessing the seamen's identity document referred to in Article 5 whom it consider undesirable.
Accidents at sea
1. If a vessel of one of the Contracting Parties suffers any accident in the maritime areas of any of the other Contracting Parties, the relevant authorities of the coastal state:
a) shall inform immediately the relevant authority and a diplomatic or consular representative of the flag state of the ship to assume the functions incumbent on them; and
b) shall afford the same protection and assistance to the passengers and crew members, as would be given to the passengers and crew members of the vessel flying its own flag.
2. Salvage and rescue operations and its organization shall be carried out in conformity with international conventions and the national legislation of the respective Contracting Party.
1. The vessels and crew members of one Contracting Party during their stay in the territorial waters and ports of the other Contracting Party shall observe the relevant legislation of the coastal state.
2. When a crew member of a vessel of one Contracting Party has committed an offence on board the vessel in the territorial waters of any other Contracting Party, the relevant authorities of that Contracting Party shall not prosecute him without the consent of the master of the vessel or of a diplomatic or consular representative of the flag state of the ship, unless:
a) the consequences of the offence extend to its territory; or
b) the offence is of a kind to disturb the peace of the state or the good order of the territorial waters; or
c) according to the law of the state, the offence is a serious offence; or
d) the offence has been committed against a person who is not a crew member of that vessel; or
e) the offence concerns illicit traffic of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances.
3. The provisions of paragraph 2 of this Article do not affect the right of each Contracting Party to take any steps authorized by its national legislation for the purpose of arrest or investigation on board a foreign ship passing through the territorial waters after leaving the internal waters.
Development of maritime transport and co-operation
The Contracting Parties agree:
a) to promote the development of maritime transport in a spirit of fair competition, non-discrimination and consideration of mutual interests and to remove any difficulties in this field;
b) to exchange information necessary for accelerating and facilitating the flow of commercial goods at sea and at ports and strengthening the co-operation between their merchant fleets;
c) to develop exchange of information and recommendations related to navigation and crossing through the straits and territorial waters with respect to the activities resulting from this exchange;
d) to develop the maritime relationship between the enterprises and maritime organizations of the Contracting Parties and also co-operate very closely in the task of eliminating any difficulties which may prejudice the steady growth of maritime traffic between their countries; to facilitate investments in the field of shipping;
e) to promote development of multimodal transport services between the Contracting Parties and to promote investments in accordance with the applicable national legislation;
f) to promote development of shipping traffic between the ports of Contracting Parties, introducing when considered reasonable and acceptable specific requirements applied to such traffic;
g) to facilitate the transfer of technology and know-how;
h) to facilitate the exchange and training of staff in various maritime activities.
Exchange of information and documents
The competent authorities of the Contracting Parties shall exchange the information regarding:
a) seamen's identity documents;
b) Certificates of Competency, Certificates or Diplomas of maritime training institutions and courses;
c) relevant authorities performing duties under the provisions of the present Agreement;
d) other information relevant to proper implementation of this Agreement.
1. For the purpose of efficient implementation of this Agreement and for consideration of any other shipping matters of mutual interest, a Joint Committee will be set up, if necessary. The Committee will be composed of Government officials and experts appointed by the competent authorities of the Contracting Parties and may be convened at the request of any Contracting Party.
2. Disagreements and disputes arising from the implementation or interpretation of the present Agreement shall be settled by the Joint Committee. In the case when the Joint Committee can not reach agreement acceptable for all Contracting Parties, the disputable issue shall be settled by diplomatic channels.
Nothing in the present Agreement shall affect the rights and obligations of the Contracting Parties which arise from the other international treaties concluded by the Contracting Parties.
1. The Contracting Parties will notify in writing the Government of the Republic of Latvia, acting as a depositary, when the legal requirements for the entry into force of the present Agreement in their respective countries have been completed. The Agreement shall enter into force thirty (30) days after the receipt of the last notification. The depositary shall inform the Contracting Parties without delay of each deposit of the notification on the fact that legal requirements obligatory to make the Agreement enter into force have been fulfilled and the date of entry into force.
2. The present Agreement may be amended by the mutual agreement of the Contracting Parties and amendments shall be regarded as an integral part of the Agreement and shall enter into force in the same way as the Agreement.
3. Each Contracting Party may terminate the present Agreement at any time by giving notice to the depositary through diplomatic channels. The Agreement shall cease to have effect on the respective Contracting Party six (6) months after the receipt of such notice by the depositary. The depositary shall inform the Contracting Parties without delay of notice of termination and the date of termination.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF the undersigned, being duly authorized by their respective Governments, have signed the present Agreement.
DONE at Tallin, on 19th February in the year 1999, in three originals, each in the Latvian, Estonian, Lithuanian and English languages. In the case of any disagreement of interpretation, the English text shall prevail.
For the Government of the Republic of Latvia Anatolijs Gorbunovs
For the Government of the Republic of Estonia Toivo Jurgensons Minister of Transport and Communications
For the Government of the Republic of Lithuania Rimantas Didžiokas Minister of Transport and Communications
Saskaņā ar Ārlietu ministrijas informāciju ("Latvijas Vēstnesis", 10.01.2000., Nr.7) nolīgums stājās spēkā 1999.gada 19.janvārī.
Tiesību akta pase
Depozitārijs:Latvijas Republikas valdība
Publicēts:"Latvijas Vēstnesis", 22/23, 26.01.2000.