JEAIL > Volume 7(2); 2014 > Notes & Comments
Research Paper
Published online: November 30, 2014
DOI: :

International Arbitration of Maritime Delimitation: An Alternative for East Asia?

Chao Wang
Guanghua Law School, Zhejiang University
51 Zhijiang Road, 310008, Hangzhou, China
Corresponding Author:

ⓒ Copyright YIJUN Institute of International Law
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


International arbitration, as a neutral, flexible, efficient and binding legal means of dispute resolution, has been effective in settling maritime delimitation disputes, especially in recent years since the UNCLOS came into force. There are a number of reasons (i.e. advantages) for its increased popularity. Reasonable expectations thus arise as to its applicability onto similar maritime delimitation disputes of the East Asian countries whose diplomatic efforts have mostly failed to address these matters. This article examines this practical issue primarily from the legal perspective by reviewing relevant international rules including the UNCLOS provisions on compulsory dispute resolution and cases such as the ongoing Philippines-China arbitration over the South China Sea. Observations are also made from the political and cultural perspectives as well. It concludes that, though multiple dispute settlement means are still encouraged, international arbitration could be an important alternative for East Asian countries seeking a peaceful solution to their maritime delimitation disputes.

Keywords : Maritime Delimitation, Dispute Resolution, International Arbitration, UNCLOS, Compulsory Procedures, East Asia

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