International seabed authority will have no ability to levy taxes and is limited to managing deep seabed mining
[MYTH] The International Seabed Authority has the power to regulate seven-tenths of the earth’s surface, impose international taxes, etc.
- The Convention addresses seven-tenths of the earth’s surface. However, the International Seabed Authority (ISA) does not.
- The authority of the ISA is limited to administering mining of minerals in areas of the deep seabed beyond national jurisdiction, generally more than 200 miles from the shore of any country. At present, and in the foreseeable future, such deep seabed mining is economically unfeasible. The ISA has no other role and has no general regulatory authority over the uses of the oceans, including freedom of navigation and overflight.
- The ISA has no authority or ability to levy taxes.
Opponents argue that by ratifying UNCLOS, the United Nations would be given the first opportunity to tax U.S. citizens. However, this is a misunderstanding of the royalties structure within UNCLOS. The International Seabed Authority requires royalty payments from all companies engaged in seabed mining in areas that do not belong to any country and are therefore under the management of the ISA. These payments are a small fraction of the revenue and similar to payments U.S. companies already pay around the world to governments for resource concessions.