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IBRU: Centre for Borders Research

Boundary news

Boundary news Headlines

Germany and the Netherlands end Ems River border dispute

(6 November 2014)

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders signed an agreement marking an end to a decades-old border dispute regarding the location of the boundary at the mouth of the Ems River. The agreement states that the border will remain ambiguous and that both countries will be responsible for the area.

The two countries signed a tentative agreement establishing the maritime boundary up to three miles from the coast in 1960, but it left the area between three and 12 miles from the coastline unresolved. The lack of resolution created several economic issues, including ongoing conflicts between German and Dutch fishermen as well as questions over the status of the Riffgat wind farm constructed by German firm EWE in the disputed region in 2010.

The agreement was signed aboard a ship at the mouth of the Ems River. Steinmeier commented that resolution represented "a good result for the economy, for new wind farms and maritime interests."

Sources

Germany and the Netherlands end centuries-old border dispute, 24 October 2014, by Elizabeth Schumacher, Deutsche Welle, http://www.dw.de/germany-and-the-netherlands-end-centuries-old-border-dispute/a-18020219

Germany, Netherlands end Ems River border dispute, 25 October 2014, World Bulletin, http://www.worldbulletin.net/news/147013/germany-netherlands-end-ems-river-border-dispute