Agreement on the maritime border between the Faroe Islands and Iceland
Jóannes Eidesgaard, Prime Minister of the Faroe Islands, and Valgerður Sverrisdóttir, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iceland, today signed an agreement regarding the maritime delimitation in the area between the Faroe Islands and Iceland.
The agreement defines the maritime boundary area between the Faroe Islands and Iceland inside of their respective 200 nautical miles limits.
It marks the end of a disagreement dating back more than three decades, when the two sides declared their 200 nautical miles limits, and the median lines established by each of them resulted in an area of overlapping claims, estimated at app. 3,650 square kilometres. In 2002 a political understanding was reached which formed the basis of the agreement signed today.
The agreement establishes a single boundary applicable to all wide maritime zones within 200 nautical miles, such as the fisheries zone, the continental shelf and the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). However, regarding the fisheries zone, a particular feature of the agreement is the establishment of a ‘Special Area’ covering part of the area formerly in dispute, in which Faroese and Icelandic vessels shall have the right to fish under the rules and regulations applicable to them in their respective fisheries zones, and only be subject to the control and enforcement of their own authorities. The same applies to marine scientific research.
“We are pleased with the signing of this agreement today. It will give the fishermen of both sides the certainty they need when fishing in the formerly disputed area. I feel confident that the agreement will strengthen the good neighbourly relations between the Faroe Islands and Iceland” said Mr. Eidesgaard.
The agreement will enter into force when it has been approved by the respective parliaments.