The law relating to the utilisation of international drainage basins
PublisherLondon School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
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The object of this thesis is to suggest that the principle of equitable utilisation in the law of international drainage basins, is in the process of emerging as a rule of customary international law. As a preliminary consideration, it has been preferred to exclude navigational uses, pollution and boundary problems, instead concentrating on the utilisation or diversion of the waters for non-navigational purposes. A perusal of the existing literature on the subject revealed the fruitful possibility of researching on Asian rivers basins. Garretson, Hayton and Olmstead's contribution relating to the drainage basins of the Columbia, Nile, Indus, Plata and Colorado as well as earlier research on the Indus Basin, brought out the necessity of analogous studies on the Lower Mekong Basin and the Lower Ganges Basin. An attempt has been made to demonstrate that: (1) Advanced technology and economic development of international rivers assisted the integrated and comprehensive utilisation of international drainage basins. (2) Regional economic integration as one of the manifestations of international economic integration resulted in a more effective exploitation of international drainage basins. (3) Earlier legal concepts of an absolutist nature gave way to more balanced theories: community in the waters approach and the principle of limited territorial sovereignty. (4) Having found acceptance in the utilisation of international drainage basins, the principle of limited territorial sovereignty in its wider context has evolved as the principle of equitable utilisation.