Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ):

he Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) is an area beyond and adjacent to the territorial sea. The outer limit of the exclusive economic zone cannot exceed 200M from the baseline from which the breadth of the territorial sea is measured. In the EEZ, Australia has sovereign rights for the purpose of exploring and exploiting, conserving and managing all natural resources of the waters superjacent to the seabed and of the seabed and its subsoil together with other activities such as the production of energy from water, currents and wind. Jurisdiction also extends to the establishment and use of artificial islands, installations and structures, marine scientific research, the protection and preservation of the marine environment, and other rights and duties.

The Australian EEZ is defined in the Seas and Submerged Lands Act 1973 ('the SSL Act' - including the amendments to that Act made by the Maritime Legislation Amendment Act 1994).

The outer limit of the Australian EEZ is set out in the Proclamation under the SSL Act which was made on 26 July 1994 and published in Gazette S290 on 29 July 1994. That proclamation entered into force on 1 August 1994. The outer boundary is mostly 200M from the territorial sea baselines. However the Proclamation pulls the boundary back to less than 200M in areas of agreed or potential delimitation with other countries. The metes and bounds definitions where the boundary has been pulled back are taken from Australia's maritime delimitation agreements with other countries and, where no such agreement exists, largely follow the Fisheries Management Act 1991 ('the FMA Act') 'excepted waters' Proclamation which was published in Gazette No.S52 of 14 February 1992.

Key Terms


Exclusive Economic Zone