EU Relations with South Georgian and South Sandwich Islands
South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands is one of twelve overseas territories of the United Kingdom and is an archipelago consisting of 11 small volcanic islands approximately 350km long. Some of these volcanoes are still active.
The administrative centre is King Edward Point. The islands are situated approximately 1000 km east of the Falkland Islands. More than 75% of the island is covered by permanent ice with many large glaciers, ice caps and snowfields reaching the sea at the head of fjords. The islands have a large bird and seal population.
In 1993 the UK extended the exclusive fishing zone from 12nm to 200nm around each island after recognizing the importance of preserving the marine stocks in adjacent waters. There are no permanent inhabitants on the islands however in March 2001 the small military garrison withdrew from South Georgia following the end of the Argentine occupation of 1982 and was replaced by a permanent group of British Antarctic Survey (BAS) Scientists. South Sandwich Islands are uninhabited.
Under a contract to the Government of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands the BAS are undertaking a programme of scientific research with the objective of supporting the Government in its environmental management and sustainable development of the Territory.
The economy is primarily based on the sale of postage stamps produced in the UK, sale of fishing licenses and harbour and landing fees from tourist vessels. In adjacent waters fishing takes place as there is a potential of income from finfish and krill harvesting. Additionally, the tourism industry is incrementally increasing through specialized cruise ships.
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands have the same Commissioner, Howard Pearce, who is also the Governor of Falkland Islands. The Commissioner under the South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands’ Constitution consults the Executive Council of the Falkland Islands on matters which he believes will affect the Falkland Islands. The First Secretary at Government House in Stanley (concurrently Assistant Commissioner and Director of Fisheries) is the assistant to the Commissioner (Harriet Hall). At the Government House there is also an Operations Manager, an Assistant Operations Manager for South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands in addition to a Marine Officer based in South Georgia. The British Forces (South Atlantic Islands) advises the Commissioner on matters concerning defence or internal security of the Islands.
Argentina asserts a claim to sovereignty over South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.
External and regional environment
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands do not receive any Community aid.
Relations with the EU
No content for the moment.
Relations with international community
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands do not have independent international relations at the political level.