§ Mr. Gordon Wilson
asked the Secretary of State for Energy what agreement was reached with the Isle of Man in respect of its rights to offshore mineral exploitation in the Irish Sea.
§ Dr. Summerskill
I have been asked to reply.
The Isle of Man is not part of the United Kingdom but a dependency of the Crown with its own system of law and administration.
The Continental Shelf Act 1964 does not confer extra-territorial powers on any Isle of Man authority in respect of the area of sea immediately adjacent to the territorial waters around the Island.
In 1966 Her Majesty's Government, recognising the Island Government's interest in the exploitation of the resources of the continental shelf in that area, entered into an agreement with the Government of the Isle of Man that provides for the Island to benefit from the exploitation of the petroleum resources of the continental shelf.
The general financial arrangements are set out in the Miscellaneous Financial Provisions Act 1968. They provide for the Government of the Isle of Man to receive a share of the licence fees and royalties paid to the Secretary of State under the Petroleum Production Act 1934—as amended by the Continental Shelf Act 1964—in respect of the entire British continental shelf outside territorial waters.
The agreement does not cover the exploitation of minerals other than petroleum; nor does it apply to the exploitation of resources within the territorial waters around the Isle of Man, which is a matter for the Isle of Man Government.