The Old Regime: the 1969 Civil Liability Convention and the 1971 Fund Convention

The international compensation regime for oil pollution was originally set up some four decades ago by the 1969 Civil Liability Convention (1969 CLC) and the 1971 Fund Convention. The 1969 CLC entered into force in 1975.

The main features of the Convention are the same as those of the 1992 CLC, but there are differences on specific points. Most importantly, under the 1969 CLC, the limit of the shipowner’s liability is much lower than under the 1992 CLC (up to a maximum of 14 million SDR). As at 31 December 2021, 24 States were Parties to the 1969 CLC and also Parties to the 1992 CLC. In such cases, States are advised to denounce the 1969 CLC as it can lead to confusion in national law. The Secretariat is available to assist Member States on this matter if required.

The International Oil Pollution Compensation Fund, 1971 (1971 Fund) was set up under the 1971 Fund Convention, when the latter entered into force in 1978. The 1971 Fund Convention ceased to be in force on 24 May 2002 and consequently does not apply to incidents occurring after that date. The maximum amount of compensation payable by the 1971 Fund per incident was 60 million SDR, including the amount paid under the 1969 CLC. At the October 2014 session of the 1971 Fund Administrative Council, 1971 Fund Member States voted to wind up the 1971 Fund with effect from 31 December 2014. Consequently the 1971 Fund ceased to exist as of that date. Further information relating to the 1971 Fund can be found under the History section and in the 1971 Fund Commemorative Brochure.