Saturday, February 20, 2010

International trade law or international water law for transboundary water transfers?


A new book anounced for publication on 01 July 2010 could look at the flash point between international water law (which is fundamentally based on the principle of equitable and reasonable use) and international trade law.

International Trade in Water Rights: The Next Step by Aline Baillat Ballabriga apparently argues that the recognition of water as an economic good in domestic water reform will increasingly impact the management of international watercourses.

This is an area already covered to some extent. However, Ballabriga's new book might be exciting, as the table of contents could be interpreted so as to foster controversy.

For example, a mention of the «Property Regime of International Watercourses» might be percieved as a new approach on the traditional view of natural resources - such as land and water - being objects of state dominium in international law (dominium is not property).

Also, the choice of case-studies appears somewhat ambiguous, as the Murray-Darling is surely not an international basin. To what extent lessons can be drawn from it to enlighten the main argument?

This might be material for a nice book review...

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