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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Flags of Convenience

Doris König, Tim René Salomon

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved.date: 12 August 2022

Subject(s):
Sustainable development — Flag state — UNCLOS (UN Convention on the Law of the Sea)

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law under the direction of Professor Anne Peters (2021–) and Professor Rüdiger Wolfrum (2004–2020). 

1 The most common motivation for shipowners to register merchant vessels (Merchant Ships) under flags of convenience (‘FOCs’)—namely in an open registry State—is an economic one, ie the maximizing of profits by minimizing operational costs through the reduction of registration costs, lower non-wage labour costs, reduced labour standards, and, often enough, lower compliance with environmental and safety regulations. However, today other factors of FOCs come into play as well, such as an increase in efficiency (eg by reducing port inspection delays due to an FOC...
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