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Open registries as an enabler of maritime sanctions evasion

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Article number104090
Pages (from-to)104090
Published1 Sep 2020

King's Authors


Vessels engaged in the evasion of maritime sanctions are predominantly flagged by open registries: registries that impose little to no nationality requirements on vessel owners and operators. This paper investigates the causes of this phenomenon, arguing that open registries generally lack adequate measures for detecting sanctions evasion in their fleets and that they are targeted for flagging services by sanctions evaders. At the root of this vulnerability to flagging sanctions evaders is the for-profit nature of the open registry system which encourages registries to jettison regulation and oversight to increase their marketability in the competitive industry of international flagging.

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