By virtue of article 19, paragraph 1, of the Statute, the expenses of the Tribunal are borne by the States Parties and by the International Seabed Authority on such terms and in such a manner as shall be decided at Meetings of the States Parties.
The Financial Regulations of the Tribunal were adopted by the thirteenth Meeting of States Parties on 12 June 2003 and became effective on 1 January 2004. The Financial Regulations of the Tribunal were amended by the thirtieth Meeting of States Parties on 9 December 2020 (see SPLOS/30/16). The amendments to the Financial Regulations of the Tribunal are based on the revisions made by the United Nations to its Financial Regulations, as contained in document A/67/345, with a view to implementing International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS). Due regard has been paid to the Tribunal’s specific requirements. The Meeting decided that the Regulations would become effective on 1 January 2021 and would apply to the financial period 2021 and to subsequent financial periods.
The draft Financial Rules of the Tribunal were submitted to the fourteenth Meeting of States Parties pursuant to regulation 10.1(a), of the Financial Regulations of the Tribunal. The Meeting took note of the Financial Rules on 15 June 2004. In accordance with rule 114.1, the Financial Rules of the Tribunal became effective on 1 January 2005. On 7 October 2020, the Tribunal, acting upon a proposal of the Registrar, approved amendments to the Financial Rules required for the implementation of IPSAS, with provisional effect as from 1 January 2021, and decided to submit the amendments to the thirty-first Meeting of States Parties for its consideration and endorsement. The amendments to the Financial Rules of the Tribunal are based on the revisions made by the United Nations to its Financial Rules, as contained in document A/67/345. Due regard has been paid to the Tribunal’s specific requirements. On 24 June 2021, the Meeting endorsed the amendments to the Financial Rules of the Tribunal, which became effective on 1 January 2021, in accordance with the proposed amendment to rule 114.1, and shall apply to the financial period 2021 and to subsequent financial periods (see SPLOS/31/8).
According to regulation 3.1 of the Financial Regulations of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (“the Financial Regulations of the Tribunal”), the Registrar is responsible for preparing the draft budget of the Tribunal. The draft budget is submitted to the Committee on Budget and Finance for comments and recommendations, and then to the Tribunal for consideration and approval. The proposed budget as approved by the Tribunal is submitted to the Meeting of States Parties for its final approval.
Following the decision of the fourteenth Meeting of States Parties, the budget is now based on a period of two consecutive calendar years (SPLOS/117, para. 1).
The Registrar is responsible for the accounts and financial administration in accordance with the financial procedures of the Tribunal (Rules, article 36, para. 1(l)). Regulation 4.1 of the Financial Regulations of the Tribunal provides that the appropriations adopted by the Meeting of States Parties constitute an authorization for the Registrar to incur commitments and make payments for the purposes for which the appropriations were adopted and up to the amounts adopted.
The accounts of the Tribunal are audited after the end of each financial period, which corresponds to two calendar years. The audit reports are made available to the Meeting of States Parties.
Under regulation 4.4 of the Financial Regulations of the Tribunal, the cash surplus for the budget period is determined by crediting to the provisional cash surplus any arrears of prior periods’ contributions received during this period and any savings from the provisions made for commitments for the period. Further, regulation 4.5 of the Financial Regulations of the Tribunal provides that any cash surplus in the budget at the close of any budget period shall be apportioned among States Parties in proportion to the contributions determined for the budget period to which the surplus relates. The amount of the cash surplus so apportioned to a State Party shall be surrendered if its contribution for that budget period has been paid in full.
The General Assembly of the United Nations approved on 30 October 2000 the establishment of a voluntary trust fund to assist States in the settlement of disputes through the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (Resolution 55/7 on "Oceans and the law of the sea"). The fund has been established and is operational.
Contributions of States Parties to the budget for 2023-2024 are to be based upon the scale of assessments of the regular budget of the United Nations for the preceding financial year, adjusted to take account of participation in the Convention. The Meeting of States Parties decided that a floor rate of 0.01 per cent and a ceiling rate of 22 per cent would be used in establishing the rate of assessment for States Parties for the budget for 203-2024. It also took note that the contribution of the European Union to the budget would amount to EUR 107,000 for each year.
The overall remuneration of the members of the Tribunal currently consists of three elements: an annual allowance, a special allowance for each day that they are engaged on the business of the Tribunal, and a subsistence allowance for each day that they are required to be present at the seat of the Tribunal. The members of the Tribunal may also be paid a subsistence allowance for preparatory work before meetings of the Tribunal which they undertake away from their normal place of residence. Special and subsistence allowances are also payable to judges when they are engaged on the business of the Tribunal.
In considering the level of remuneration of a member of the Tribunal, the second Meeting of States Parties decided that the level of remuneration of a judge of the International Court of Justice would be the comparator.
The annual allowance has been set at one third of the overall annual remuneration. The special allowance and the subsistence allowance are each subject to a maximum limit of one third of the overall remuneration.
The General Assembly, in its decision 62/547 of 3 April 2008, decided to set, effective 1 April 2008, the annual net base salary of the members of the International Court of Justice at US$ 158,000, with a corresponding post adjustment multiplier equal to 1 per cent of the net base salary, to which would be applied the post adjustment mechanism for the Netherlands. In its decision the General Assembly also endorsed the adjustment mechanism as proposed by the Secretary-General as follows:
"Should the above proposal be considered, … the Secretary-General would also propose that on the occasion of future revisions to the base scale applicable to staff in the Professional and higher categories that are effected through the consolidation of post adjustment multiplier points into the base scale with a corresponding readjustment in the post adjustment multipliers, the annual base salary of the members of the International Court of Justice and the judges and ad litem judges of the Tribunals also be adjusted by the same percentage and at the same time".
Judges ad hoc are entitled to receive compensation for each day on which they exercise their functions (Statute, article 18, para. 4). Further to a proposal presented by the Tribunal, the eleventh Meeting of States Parties adopted a decision on compensation for judges ad hoc, which should be consistent with the level of remuneration of elected members of the Tribunal (SPLOS/73, para. 36).
The nineteenth Meeting of States Parties decided that the retirement benefit of the members of the Tribunal should continue to be based on 50 per cent of the annual salary (excluding post adjustment) as defined in the Pension Scheme Regulations or 50 per cent of the annual salary based on the level of remuneration decided by the fifteenth Meeting of States Parties in June 2005, whichever amount is higher, by reference to nine years of service. The nineteenth Meeting of States Parties also decided that members of the Tribunal who are re-elected should receive one three-hundredth of their retirement benefit for each further month beyond nine years, up to a maximum pension of two thirds of the annual net base salary, excluding post adjustment. Finally, the nineteenth Meeting of States Parties requested the Tribunal to make the necessary revisions to article 1, paragraph 2, of the Pension Scheme Regulations, on the method of determining the amount of retirement pension.
The travelling expenses of the members of the Tribunal are met in accordance with regulations adopted at Meetings of the States Parties (Statute, article 18, paragraph 7).
The salary of the Registrar is determined at Meetings of the States Parties, on the proposal of the Tribunal (Statute, article 18, paragraph 6). As determined at the fourth Meeting of States Parties, the Registrar has a rank equivalent to an Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations. The Deputy Registrar has the rank of a Director (D-2).
The staff of the Registry is remunerated according to the practice of the United Nations common system of salaries, allowances and benefits, as administered by the International Civil Service Commission. The Tribunal participates in the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund.
The travelling expenses of staff of the Registry are paid under the conditions set out in the Staff Regulations and Staff Rules of the Tribunal.