The States Parties to this Convention
Considering that the International Hydrographic Bureau was established in June 1921 to contribute to making navigation easier and safer throughout the world by improving nautical charts and documents;
Considering that the International Hydrographic Organization is a competent international organization, as referred to in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, which coordinates on a worldwide basis the setting of standards for the production of hydrographic data and the provision of hydrographic services and which facilitates capacity building of national hydrographic services;
Considering that the vision of the International Hydrographic Organization is to be the authoritative worldwide hydrographic body which actively engages all coastal and interested States to advance maritime safety and efficiency and which supports the protection and sustainable use of the marine environment;
Considering that the mission of the International Hydrographic Organization is to create a global environment in which States provide adequate and timely hydrographic data, products and services and ensure their widest possible use; and
Desiring to pursue on an intergovernmental basis their co-operation in hydrography;
There is hereby established an International Hydrographic Organisation, hereinafter referred to as the Organisation, the seat of which shall be in Monaco.
The Organization shall have a consultative and technical nature. It shall be the object of the Organization:
(a) To promote the use of hydrography for the safety of navigation and all other marine purposes and to raise global awareness of the importance of hydrography;
(b) To improve global coverage, availability and quality of hydrographic data, information, products and services and to facilitate access to such data, information, products and services;
(c) To improve global hydrographic capability, capacity, training, science and techniques;
(d) To establish and enhance the development of international standards for hydrographic data, information, products, services and techniques and to achieve the greatest possible uniformity in the use of these standards;
(e) To give authoritative and timely guidance on all hydrographic matters to States and international organizations;
(f) To facilitate coordination of hydrographic activities among the Member States; and
(g) To enhance cooperation on hydrographic activities among States on a regional basis.
The Member States of the Organization are the States Parties to this Convention.
The Organization shall comprise:
(a) One-fourth of, but not less than thirty, Member States shall take seats in the Council, the first two-thirds of whom shall take their seats on a regional basis and the remaining one-third on the basis of hydrographic interests, which shall be defined in the General Regulations.
(b) The Secretary-General shall maintain all such records as may be necessary for the efficient discharge of the work of the Organization and shall prepare, collect, and circulate any documentation that may be required.
(f) In the performance of their duties, the Secretary-General, the Directors and the personnel shall not seek or receive instructions from any Member State or from any authority external to the Organization. They shall refrain from any action that may be incompatible with their positions as international officials. Each Member State on its part undertakes to respect the exclusively international character of the responsibilities of the Secretary-General, the Directors and the personnel and not seek to influence them in the discharge of their responsibilities
Where decisions cannot be reached by consensus, the following provisions shall apply:
(a) Except as otherwise provided in this Convention, each Member State shall have one vote.
(b) For the election of the Secretary-General and the Directors, each Member State shall have a number of votes determined by a scale established in relation to the tonnage of their fleets.
(c) Except as otherwise provided in this Convention, decisions shall be taken by a simple majority of Member States present and voting, and if the votes are tied the Chair shall decide.
(d) Decisions taken on matters related to the policy or finances of the Organization, including amendments to the General and Financial Regulations, shall be taken by a two-thirds majority of Member States present and voting.
(e) With respect to subparagraphs (c) and (d) of this Article and subparagraph (b) of Article XXI below, the phrase “Member States present and voting” means Member States present and casting an affirmative or negative vote. Member States that abstain from voting shall be considered as not voting.
(f) In the case of a submission to Member States in accordance with Article VI (g) (vii), the decision shall be taken by a majority of the Member States who cast a vote, with the minimum number of affirmative votes being at least one-third of all Member States.
In relation to matters within its scope, the Organization may cooperate with international organizations whose interests and activities are related to the purpose of the Organization.
The functioning of the Organization shall be set forth in detail in the General and Financial Regulations, which are annexed to this Convention but do not form an integral part thereof. In the event of any inconsistency between this Convention and the General or Financial Regulations, this Convention shall prevail.
The official languages of the Organisation shall be English and French.
The Organization shall have legal personality. In the territory of each of its Member States it shall enjoy, subject to agreement with the Member State concerned, such privileges and immunities as may be necessary for the exercise of its functions and the fulfilment of its object.
The expenses necessary for the functioning of the Organisation shall be met:
(a) From the ordinary annual contributions of Member States in accordance with a scale based on the tonnage of their fleets;
(b) From donations, bequests, subventions and other sources, with the approval of the Assembly.
Any Member State which is two years in arrears in its contributions shall be denied all voting rights and benefits conferred on Member States by the Convention and the Regulations until such time as the outstanding contributions have been paid.
Any dispute concerning the interpretation or application of this Convention which is not settled by negotiation or by the good offices of the Secretary-General of the Organization shall, at the request of one of the parties to the dispute, be referred to an arbitrator designated by the President of the International Court of Justice.
1 This Convention shall be open in Monaco on 3 May 1967, and subsequently at the Legation of the Principality of Monaco in Paris from 1 June until 31 December 1967, for signature by any Government which participates in the work of the Bureau on 3 May 1967.
4 The Government of the Principality of Monaco shall inform the Governments referred to in paragraph 1 above, and the President of the Directing Committee, of each signature and of each deposit of an instrument of ratification or approval.
(a) This Convention shall be open for accession by any State that is a member of the United Nations. The Convention shall enter into force for such a State on the date on which it has deposited its instrument of accession with the Depositary, which shall inform the Secretary-General and all Member States.
(b) A State that is not a member of the United Nations may only accede to this Convention by applying to the Depositary, and by having its application approved by two-thirds of the Member States. The Convention shall enter into force for such a State on the date on which it has deposited its instrument of accession with the Depositary, which shall inform the Secretary-General and all Member States.
(b) Proposals of amendments shall be considered by the Assembly and decided upon by a majority of two-thirds of the Member States present and voting. When a proposed amendment has been approved by the Assembly, the Secretary-General of the Organization shall request the Depositary to submit it to all Member States.
Upon expiration of a period of five years after its entry into force, this Convention may be denounced by any Contracting Party by giving at least one year’s notice, in a notification addressed to the Depositary. The denunciation shall take effect upon 1 January next following the expiration of the notice and shall involve the abandonment by the State concerned of all rights and benefits of membership in the Organization.
After the present Convention enters into force it shall be registered by the Government of the Principality of Monaco with the Secretariat of the United Nations in accordance with Article 102 of its Charter.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF the undersigned, duly authorized thereto, have signed this Convention.
DONE at Monaco on the third day of May nineteen hundred and sixty-seven, in a single copy in the English and French languages, each text being equally authentic, which shall be deposited in the Archives of the Government of the Principality of Monaco, which shall transmit certified copies thereof to all signatory and acceding Governments and to the President of the Directing Committee.