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  • All applications for U.S. scientists to conduct marine scientific research in foreign waters must be submitted 6 or more months in advance of the start of research.  Applications submitted under this timeframe will not be accepted or processed.

  • For all planned marine scientific research related port calls, please refer to the State Department travel advisories.

  • If you are still planning to make a port call as part of your marine scientific research cruise, please contact

The following describes additional requirements, conditions, and special materials pertaining to certain coastal States, dependencies, and special sovereign areas that should be included with a Research Application Tracking System (RATS) Portal MSR application.:

If you intend to apply for research around dependencies and/or areas of special sovereignty, additional documentation may be required. Please refer to the list of Dependencies and Areas of Special Sovereignty to determine whether your area of research belongs to a sovereign State and requires additional documentation.

While the Department of State and U.S. embassy officers will facilitate the receipt of MSR consent, it is the responsibility of the chief scientist and platform operator to secure any additional licenses or permits required by the coastal State. This list is not necessarily complete or exhaustive; it is based on the experience of OPA in facilitating research authorizations and is provided as guidance to applicants. The listed requirements, links to internet sites, and forms should not be construed as an endorsement by the Government of the United States of the views or content contained therein.

If a link is inactive below, please contact to obtain the guidance/materials.

Countries & Areas


  • Letter addressed to the Harbor Master requesting permission for the cruise.
  • Letter addressed to the Ministry of Transport requesting permission for the cruise.


  • Prior collaboration with an Angolan scientist is absolutely necessary for clearance.

Antigua and Barbuda


  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.
  • Spanish version of the name of all claimed territories.
  • For applications related to the Falkland Islands/Islas Malvinas, South Georgia or the South Sandwich Islands, Argentina requires the use of Spanish names: Islas Malvinas, Georgias del Sur, and Sandwich del Sur on the Spanish application and cruise track. The use of these names does not indicate a U.S. position on the dispute of these areas between Argentina and the United Kingdom.
  • For applications related to the Falkland Islands/Islas Malvinas, South Georgia or the South Sandwich Islands, also submit a separate application for the UK.
  • Argentina will most likely request to have a participant/observer onboard; please ensure an extra berth is available.


  • Applications must be submitted in the RATS system 7 months in advance.
  • Include the special permit application form(s ) if research is to be conducted:
    • In a commonwealth park or reserve
    • On marine mammals; and/or
    • Within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
  • Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship must be in receipt of maritime crew visa (MCV) applications for every person aboard the research platform.
  • Details of any relationship between the proposed research and any agreement between Australia and the requesting State.
  • Line drawing or photograph of the research platform.
  • When research is planned within three (3) nautical miles from the territorial sea baseline, there may be requirements or conditions pursuant to the legislation of the adjacent Australian State or Territory.
  • (If applicable) Submit Public Vessel Status permit via the ships agent no less than two months in advance of the first port call.

The Bahamas

  • In addition to the RATS application, all applicants must apply through the Bahamas portal: THE COMMONWEALTH OF THE BAHAMAS RESEARCH AND PERMITTING SYSTEM (
  • NOTE: Vessels are required to clear into an official port-of-entry prior to commencing any activities and clear out at a port-of-exit upon completion of the cruise. This requirement has been waived in the past under no particular circumstances.
  • The Bahamas is only granting up to 6 months of consent per application. If the research cruise is longer than 6 months, please submit two separate applications to the Bahamas.
  • There is currently a moratorium on all sampling in the Bahamas.  Applicants may be asked to remove sampling requests from the application.  Please contact for more information.
  • Please include CV’s for all of the scientists involved in the research.


  • Applicants should complete the “Belize Fisheries Department Application for a Marine Scientific Research Permit [226 KB]” and include this as an attachment to a RATS application.
  • Applicants must also complete, sign, and attach a Letter of Commitment [14 KB] to the RATS application.
  • The processing time for MSR applications typically takes 5-10 working days after receipt of a complete application form. Once a MSR application is approved, the applicant is advised to make payment of a research fee. A MSR permit is subsequently issued by BFD with any requisite conditions and/or other information.
  • If samples are to be exported abroad for further analysis, applicants are required to submit an application form for a Marine Sample Export Permit at least 3 working days prior to the intended departure date of the person transporting the samples.


  • Please complete and attach Bermuda’s application [281 KB] for scientific research activities to the RATS application.
  • NOTE: Mooring Notice to Operators (Subsurface Moorings in Bermuda Time-Series Area). This notice is to warn ship operators and cruise scientists of the presence of several subsurface and surface moorings located near the Bermuda Atlantic Time-Series Site (31o40’N 64o10’W).



  • Applications MUST be submitted at least 6.5 months in advance to allow for processing. All required materials must be submitted via RATS.
  • Obtain “Foreign Fishing Vessel License” from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans – Canada. Contact:
    • East Coast licenses, Connie Farr (902-426-6453)
    • West Coast licenses, Barry Ackerman (604-666-3991)
  • NOTE: Canada does not require a Coasting Trade license from the Canadian Transportation Agency if you have research authorization.
  • If conducting aerial research, the applicant should fill out and attach a 2095 form to the RATS application, and include the aircraft’s Certificate of Airworthiness and Certificate of Registration.
  • If the research expedition includes the collection of bathymetric data, please review the special requirements for bathymetric data. [50 KB]


  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.
  • NOTE: No clearance is required to test on-board instrumentation, as long as the data taken is not kept for archival or publication purposes. Notification is recommended.
  • Applications MUST be submitted at least six months in advance of research.
  • A Chilean observer is required onboard without exception; this requirement is independent of any joint research and/or any private agreement with Chilean researchers.
    • Pursuant to the Decree of Law 711 of 1975, the Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service (SHOA) of the Chilean Navy controls and monitors, on behalf of the Chilean Government, all scientific marine research by international entities or persons that takes place within the jurisdiction of the national maritime zone and national waters and appoints Chilean personnel, known as National Observers, in all scientific investigations.

The duties of the National Observer are:

  1. Before departure, inspect the vessel and instruments without any restriction of any sort with the objective of verifying that the vessel complies with the standards required to undertake oceanographic investigations. This information should be reported and recorded by issuing a specific permit/certification document. The Observer will provide a template.
  2. Remain on board during the development of the scientific marine investigation in national waters/jurisdiction.
  3. Embark on and disembark from the vessel based on the vessel’s schedule for port calls and the cruise trajectory authorized by SHOA.
  4. Monitor and control that the investigation is undertaken according to the authorization issued by SHOA and the Chilean Government and that data collection follows the authorization from the Chilean Government and the actual authorization issued by SHOA (Resolution of Authorization), protecting the national interest and institutions dealing with the jurisdiction of Chilean waters.
  5. Verify that the geographic position (Q.T.H.) of the vessel is transmitted on a daily basis at 12:00 Z and 24:00 Z or at 11:00 Z and 23:00 Z, depending on the corresponding time zone, according to the Chilean procedure for notification of vessel coordinates (CHILREP).
  6. Inform the local Maritime Authority about the partial compliance or failure to comply with the delivery of all data collected in Chilean jurisdictional waters.
  7. Once the research cruise has been completed, send to the Director of SHOA a report of the activities undertaken by the vessel while in Chilean national waters, attaching all data observed by the National Observer, any results, and holotypes within a period of 30 days.
  8. If the research is too long and complex, SHOA may appoint more than one National Observer, who will remain on board during the different stages of the research and its schedule.


  • Application MUST be submitted six months in advance.
  • If the research includes a Chinese partner, the application should be submitted solely by the Chinese partner to the State Oceanic Administration, not via the U.S. Embassy.


  • Applications MUST be submitted at least six months in advance. To allow for processing, all required materials must be submitted via RATS at least two weeks prior.
  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.
  • Copy of the “existence and legal status of the entity applying for research (such as Articles of Incorporation). If application is made through a representative, it must be accompanied by an official document certifying that they represent the applicant entity.”
  • CV and copy of the photo page of every member of the science team.
  • If a research vessel is used, submit the vessel’s International Tonnage Certificate, International Oil Pollution Prevention Certificate, Safety Management Certificate, and International Load Line Certificate, certified copy of the navigation license and registration (such as Certificate of Registry, a Certificate of Ship’s Particulars, or a vessel registration issued by a state authority).
  • Projects that involve the study of biological resources require 1) one or more Colombian co-researchers that will participate in the research or that will contribute to the project’s monitoring and evaluation; 2) submission of Form 1 of Resolution 068 of 2002 under cover of a written request to the competent environmental authority in the area of interest; and 3) once the Form is submitted, publish an extract of the submitted form in a newspaper of national, regional or local circulation. The extract must contain, at the least, the name of the institution conducting the study, the project title, a description of the scope of the research or institutional research program, the geographic area of the study, and the names of the specimens or samples of biological diversity that will be studied.
  • Complete the form Columbia Resolución 068 Del 22 De Enero De 2002. [313 KB]

Cook Islands

Costa Rica

  • In response to the health crisis caused by COVID-19, Costa Rica’s Ministry of Environment has temporarily suspended the issuance of research permits. This measure will be in force until June 1.
  • Costa Rica will most likely request to have a participant/observer onboard; please ensure an extra berth is available.

Research permit processing can take several months. Researchers should send applications at least three months in advance.

Research permit applications have the following requirements depending on the type of research:

A. Scientific research with no access to genetic resources. The National System of Protected Areas (SINAC) requires the following:

  1. Research permit application form  completed in Spanish and signed by the chief scientist.
  2. Curriculum vitae of lead scientist in charge of the project.
  3. Scanned copies of passports of lead scientist and each member of the scientific party.
  4. Digital photograph of lead scientist and of each member of the scientific party.
  5. Description of research project. These are the guidelines provided by SINAC.
  6. Letter of support from a Costa Rican institution or from the institution responsible for conducting the research (in this case the letter must have an official apostille).
  7. If the research involves taking samples out of Costa Rica, please complete the export permit and send it to Jorge Gonsalez at, along with a copy of the research permit granted by SINAC.


  • Please upload all the required documents to the RATS application and send original signed versions of documents 1 and 6 to Embassy San Jose.
  • The Science Officer at Post will send the application and documents to SINAC. Upon receipt, Costa Rican authorities from the Ministry of Environment have up to 30 working days to respond.
  • Lead researcher is responsible for submitting a report with the results of the research/sampling conducted and two copies of all other reports and publications generated from the research. A summary in Spanish of these reports and publications should also be included.
  • The payment of research application fees is not necessary unless the expedition takes place in a protected area, in which case it will be necessary to pay $5, $10 or $15 USD for research lasting 1 to 3 months, 3 to 6 months and 6 to 12 months, respectively. For more information, please contact the Science Officer at Post.
  • SINAC asks for the original signed versions of the application form and the letter of support. SINAC will be accepting electronic copies to start processing requests, but the original version of the application is still required. Please send the original documents to the following address:

U.S. Embassy
Environmental Hub
Apdo. 920-1200
Postal Code 10109
San Jose, Costa Rica

B. Scientific research with access to genetic resources. The National Commission for the Management of Biodiversity (CONAGEBIO) is responsible for issuing the permit. The lead scientist will need to create an account in CONAGEBIO’s platform  and upload the following documents, in Spanish:

  1. Registration form .
  2. Application form .
  3. Technical guidelines .
  4. Description of research project.
  5. Previously informed consent (CPI)  between the applicant and the supplier. The latter usually refers to landowners, local community authorities, or directors of conservation areas. If research is taking place in a coastal-marine area outside the limits of a protected area, the applicant must request the CPI to the Costa Rican Fisheries Authority (INCOPESCA).
  6. Scanned copy of lead scientist’s passport.
  7. If the applicant and/or the supplier is a legal person, include legal ID and copy of national ID or passport of the legal representative.
  8. If the applicant resides abroad, he/she will designate a legal representative residing in Costa Rica. See sample letter for natural persons  and sample letter for legal persons .
  9. Submit a copy of any existing contracts to access the country’s genetic, biochemical elements or resources.
  10. Submit an affidavit  stating that if the purpose of the permit changes, whether it is for bio prospection or for economic use, the applicant will comply with all the requirements established for each case.
  11. For access to ex situ collections, the applicant must sign the code of conduct  provided by CONAGEBIO’s Technical Office.


  • Embassy San Jose is responsible for requesting diplomatic clearance for incoming research vessels to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • Applicants requesting research permits involving access to genetic resources will need to work directly with CONAGEBIO.
  • Please submit a report with the results of the project, as well as any related scientific articles and publications to Embassy San Jose. If the research is in a language other than Spanish, please include an executive summary in Spanish.



  • Entering the territorial sea (12nm from shore) – 90 kunas (20 kunas for the request, 70 kunas for the authorization).
  • Scientific research – 70 kunas (20 kunas for the request, 50 kunas for the authorization).


  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.



Applicants must continue to apply for MSR consent using the RATS Portal, however, a Diplomatic Note will not be issued to enter waters under Ecuador’s jurisdiction.  Applicants must obtain permits from the Ecuador Navy and the Galapagos National Park, facilitated by shipping agents in Ecuador.  Please contact for contact information.  Ecuador will issue consent directly to the applicant, therefore, when consent is received, please send the consent to for filing in the RATS Portal.

Reports will be due in the RATS Portal under the usual process, as well as submitted directly to the Ecuador Navy and Galapagos National Park POCs. Please include the following with your application:

  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.
  • Copy of the ship’s license/registration.
  • Galapagos National Park permit application, if applicable.
  • Letter on institution letterhead listing:
    • Name and address of the representative or empowered agent in Ecuador;
    • Commitment to deliver to the Ecuadorian Government, with no cost, of the complete results and conclusions of the developed research; and
    • Commitment to observe the regulations of marine environment preservation and compensation.


  • NOTE: RV must conform to Suez Canal Authority (SCA) regulations, which require a USCG-issued Suez Tonnage Certificate.

El Salvador

  • NOTE: since issuance of authorization requires legislative approval by the Salvadoran Assembly, applicants should take this into consideration when estimating the lead time requirements for submitting applications.
  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.

Faroe Islands

Federated States of Micronesia


  • Application must be submitted 6.5 months in advance;
  • Provide clear maps including clear list of stations and precise sounding points;
  • Translate the RATS application into French. The French government requires a French version of the application;
  • The application must list all people on board.
  • Must mention a prior initial contact with local scientist a./o. local scientific organization;
  • It is important that all measurements and dimensions, particularly the ship’s dimensions, are given in meters and not feet;
  • The Preliminary cruise report must be sent between 1-3 months or 3-6 months after the end of the cruise, based on the Diplomatic Note.
  • The Final report must be sent within a year after the cruise has been completed.
  • If the research vessel is not a U.S. Flag vessel, please provide proof of liability insurance.
  • Description of the institution in charge of the project, as well as curriculum vitae of the lead scientist;

  • Tools used on board: oceanography and biology, geology (in particular whether “geological sections” are planned), drilling, instruments, clear maps including clear list of stations and precise sounding points, etc.

  • Mention whether it is possible to take an observer on-board.


  • See also DENMARK


All required forms and requirements specified below can be found at (in Spanish).  All marine scientific research in Guatemala requires a notarized load line certificate ensuring seaworthiness issued by a classification society approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Any research on biological diversity must meet the following requirements (Note:  Guatemala defines research on biological diversity as research into the variability of living organisms from any source, such as microorganisms, fungi, flora, fauna, including but not limited to terrestrial and marine ecosystems, other aquatic ecosystems and ecological complexes of which they form a part; this includes diversity within each species, between species, and of ecosystems.  End Note.):

  • File a researcher registration number with the Guatemalan National Council for Protected Areas (CONAP)
  • Fill out the application form for a research license (Form 3B)
  • Submit a research protocol according to the type of research (Form 4A)
  • Submit a statement of commitment signed by the principal researcher (Form 5)
  • Foreign researchers conducting scientific investigation without legal residence in the country must submit:
    • A letter of reference written in Spanish with letterhead, signed and stamped by the foreign institution they represent
    • Endorsement letter from a national academic institution related to the subject of the investigation signed by the head of the institution and by the national counterpart researcher who would cooperate with the investigation (Form 6)
  • Payment receipt
  • If scientific fishing, a permit must be obtained, in person, from UNIPESCA.
  • NOTE: A fee is required for research authorizations (aprx USD 100), and other fees are charged for CITES permits (aprx USD 15) and Certificates of Origin (aprx USD 9).

Any request for research within protected areas must include the following documents:

  • Endorsement letter with letterhead, signed and sealed by the administrator or co-administrator of the protected area where the investigation would be conducted.  The letter must state the administrator’s knowledge and consent to the investigation within the protected area.  If the investigation includes collection of samples, the letter must also specify that activity.
  • Requirements for researcher registration
    • File the researcher registration form (individuals or legal entities) (Form 1A or 1B)
    • Letter that certifies status of researcher as a member of a national academic institution, a non-governmental organization, research center, or other related institution
    • Copy of personal identification document or passport
    • Resumé according to the form established by CONAP
  • Payment receipt
  • Legal entities must also submit:
    • Copy of the organization’s deed
    • Copy of the notarial act stating the current appointment of the legal representative and record of registration in the corresponding registrar
    • Copy of business license
  • If the research includes the collection of biological samples, researchers must also request a collection license to CONAP by submitting collection license request form (Form 10A)

All exports of biological material require an export permit or CITES export permit when applicable.


  • If the research cruise will be conducted on vessel flagged by a country other than the United States, then you will need to apply through the Embassy of the vessel’s flag State.


  • Indian government allows international research in Indian waters or EEZ as part of a joint research collaboration.  The research must also involve Indian scientists deputed by the Indian government.
  • Applications, to be submitted in the RATS system at least 7 months in advance, should include the following details:
    • Details of the joint research and its lead partners, research vessel, and port call(s)
    • Route map for the research vessel
    • Names and designations of crew members
    • Detailed CVs for participating U.S. scientists and other international scientists (if participating)
    • Passport and Indian visa information for all international scientists  (if conducting a port call or on Ministry of Earth Sciences vessels)


  • An abstract and detailed research proposal.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a collaborator within the most relevant Indonesian organization (such as the Indonesian Institute of Sciences, LIPI) or ministry, for example:
    • Ministry of Research and Technology (MENRISTEK) Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT)
    • Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries
    • Badan Informasi Geospasial (BIG, formerly BAKOSURTANAL)

The MOU should cover all matters of collaboration, including materials transfer, sample collection, transport, and export, and breakdown of financial responsibility for costs of collaboration.

  • A letter of endorsement from the Indonesian collaborator and his/her ministry; it is recommended that this collaborator attend the biweekly meetings of Indonesia’s Foreign Research Permit Coordinating Committee (22 agencies) to address any related questions or concerns related to the application.
  • For the Chief Scientist, two letters regarding his/her qualifications, one from the funding/home institution and one from a supervisor.
  • For every scientist and technician, provide a copy of the passport ID page, CV (including a list of publications), health certificate (proof of fitness to conduct research in Indonesia), four recent red background passport size (4×6 cm) photographs, two copies of 2×3 cm size photographs, and the location of the Indonesian Embassy through which a “Visa 315” research visa will be requested. (Upon issuance of a permit, MENRISTEK directs the designated consulates to issue the visas to the scientists & technicians.)
  • A list of the equipment brought into Indonesia to support the research, including the value of these equipment stated in US dollars.
  • The MENRISTEK Research Permit Application  that should be submitted online as instructed.
  • The Ministry of Forestry Research Permit Application if the research will be conducted within one or more marine protected areas .
  • Following receipt of the MENRISTEK “research permit” obtain a “research vessel permit”, aka Clearance Approval for Indonesian Territory (CAIT) (such request is approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ship and Flight Clearance Division, the Chief Foreign Liaison of TNI Headquarters, and the Ministry of Transportation). CAIT may be submitted by either the U.S. Embassy or a designated ship’s agent.


  • The exact geographic areas in which the research is to take place, and in particular the indication by geographic coordinates of the places of research and/or sampling, possible deep anchorage’s and/or the terminal points of the contour lines. The geographic coordinates of all points must be shown on nautical charts of an adequate scale, with reference to the prime meridian of Greenwich, and particularly detailed in cases in which the programmed surveys are carried out in proximity to the coast or the islands.
  • In the case of seismic operations, the characteristics of the energizing system employed and its power. If explosive charges are used, the exact geographic coordinates, the depth of every single point of explosion, the type and quantity of explosives used, and the exact day and hour of the explosions should be given.
  • In case of dredging operations, the geographic coordinates of the starting and end points must be given.



  • Application For Consent To Conduct Marine Scientific Research In Japan [65 KB] – if collecting biological samples, be sure to include Annex II.
  • Provide Japanese translation for the description of the research with Research Implementer, Name of the Vessel, Duration, Equipment to be used, Areas of Research in bullet points on the top.
  • Crew list (name, DOB, citizenship, passport number, and passport expiration date)
  • Provide diagram and specification of any equipment that will operate autonomously from the man-based research platform.
  • If dates and/or routes are unpredictable, avoid the use of terms “approximately” or “generally”; instead, describe as follows “data will be collected within the route shown in the attached chart, however the route may change due to unforeseen weather conditions”
  • If any equipment will touch the seafloor, be sure to provide an estimate of dates and location coordinates.
  • NOTE: if operating within the 12nm territorial sea of Japan, obtain charts from the Japan Hydrographic Association.
  • Indicate (on the application form) the need for navigation/aviation restrictions around the research vessel and research instruments.
  • Photo of the research platform (vessel, AUV, etc).


  • Government of Kiribati National MSR Application Form [92 KB]
  • $3,000 – $3,300 AUD Application Fee, research dependent (contact for routing information)
  • Kiribati will most likely request to have a participant/observer onboard; please ensure an extra berth is available.
  • The $300 application processing fee will not be reimbursed if the cruise is denied or cancelled.



  • Include the possible environmental impacts of the research, what environmental precautions are being taken, and whether the purpose of the research is for commercial purposes or not.


  • Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA) Forms for protected species and sites, if applicable.


  • The application must be submitted at least six months prior to the research project’s proposed start date.
  • Applicants must attach, in writing, an “Application for consent to conduct Marine Scientific Research by States or Competent International Organisations for the Republic of Mauritius” to the RATS application. Review the guidelines and download the application under the Marine Scientific Research header on this website.
  • Please complete application that can be found under the Marine Scientific Research tab .
  • Include a copy of the Vessel Insurance.


  • Applications MUST be submitted at least 7 months in advance to RATS, which includes the below documentation.
  • Standard Form A must be translated to Spanish.
  • Please complete the rest of the requirements outlined in the links below:
  • OPA has created an optional checklist [26 KB] to assist applicants in confirming that all required documents have been attached to the application in RATS.  Please also review the websites listed above.
  • Please combine all participant CV’s into one document and upload that document into RATS.  Each CV should not be uploaded separately.
  • We will not be able to process applications that have outstanding documents.


New Zealand


Copies (pdf) of:

  • International Load Line Certificate (American Bureau of Shipping)
  • Classification Documentation/Registration
  • Certificate of Inspection/Seaworthiness – obtained from port of embarkation


  • Write to the ministry of Agriculture and Natural resources through the Nigerian Institute for Oceanography and Marine Research (NIOMR) with a copy to the Ministry of external affairs for approval
  • Liaise with local institution (NIOMR) for assistance in obtaining permits from Nigerian Navy and if fishing is involved, Fishing permits from the Federal Department of Fisheries (FDF). Condition for permits to be granted includes
    • Naval Permit:
      • Details of the survey (aims, objectives, methodologies, geographical areas, treatment and usefulness of results to Nigeria, etc.)
      • One or two Naval Personnel to be on board as observers.
      • All copies of detailed preliminary and final results must be submitted to the Naval headquarters through the Hydrography Department of the Nigerian Navy
    • Fishing permit:
      • Details of the survey (aims, objectives, methodologies, geographical areas, treatment and usefulness of results to Nigeria, etc.)
      • One or two local Scientists to be on board as observers.
      • All copies of detailed preliminary and final results must be submitted to the local institution and the FDF.
  • If the vessel is to berth in Nigeria, then formalities with the Federal Ministry of Transport, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Port Authority (NPA) are required.


  • If conducting research within 12 n.m. of shore (in the Territorial Sea), vessels are required to make a port clearance call. The exact dates of the port clearance are required to be communicated to the High Commission who will convey to the Office of External Affairs in Niue.
  • Please complete the Niue Marine Scientific Research form [31 KB] and attach in RATS application.



Please provide copies (pdf) of the following, with Spanish translation, if requested by Peruvian authorities:

  • Vessel Registry Certificate
  • International Protection Certification for Vessels and Port Facilities
  • Construction Safety Certification
  • Equipment Safety Certification
  • Radio Safety Certification
  • Freeboard Safety Certification
  • Civil Liability Safety Certification
  • Safety and Security Management Certification
  • Taxpayer Registry of the Maritime Agent Third-Party Civil Liability Insurance Policy, if applicable
  • International Tonnage Certificate (if applicable)
  • Load Line Certificate (if applicable)
  • Document of Compliance (if applicable)
  • International Oil Pollution Prevention Certificate
  • Additional certificates required by the International Maritime Organization (IMO)

Please also be prepared to deliver a hard copy package of all documents with wet signatures (where applicable) to the Embassy, if requested.  Send documents to: Economic Section, c/o Economic Specialist, U.S. Embassy Lima, Av. La Encalada, cuadra 17 s/n, Santiago de Surco, Lima 33, Peru.


  • Applications must be submitted in the RATS system 6.5 months in advance.
  • U.S. institutions must have a Philippine partner involved in the project from the planning stage onward.
  • U.S. and Philippine institutions must enter into a Memorandum of Agreement covering project activities.


  • To conduct marine research within the State of Qatar’s coastal territories, local and foreign researchers require an Environmental Permit issued by the Ministry of Municipality and Environment. A copy of the permit application form can be downloaded from the Ministry’s website at:
  • In addition, prospective researchers must include a cover letter addressed to the Ministry of Municipality and Environment explaining:
    • The type of research to be performed
    • The purpose and duration of the study
    • The equipment that will be used
    • Any other details pertinent to the intended research
  • The form and cover letter should be included in the MSR application. The US Embassy in Doha will forward these supporting documents on behalf of the applicant to the Ministry of Municipality and Environment using diplomatic channels.

Republic of the Congo

Russian Federation

  • Application MUST be submitted six months in advance.
  • Russian Federation’s Marine Scientific Research Form [229 KB] in Russian.
  • Regarding applicant’s prior marine scientific research in areas under the jurisdiction of the Russian Federation, provide documents confirming submission of samples — or the reason for not submitting samples and data — to the Russian Federation.

Saint Kitts and Nevis

Saint Lucia


  • Application: Fill out the bioprospecting application form and submit for review. Also attached with the application are:
    • Official letter of intent addressed to the CEO-MNRE, Ulu Bismarck Crawley
    • Official supporting letter from the researcher from their institution
    • Research plan and proposed research methodologies
  • Fees
    • The application fee is WST$500
    • Sample fee is WST$100 per species and a maximum of 5 samples may be taken out of the wild depending on their conservation status. Note special conditions may apply to commonly found species.
    • Export permits which is either the CITES or NON-CITES permit are WST$10 each (1 permit for all species exported and not individual permits per species).
  • MoU/LoA
    • A LoA/MoU will be signed between all the parties involved which covers the requirements of the research based on the application form signed by the researcher. This will be drafted by MNRE and will be discussed with researchers before finalization.

Saudi Arabia

  • Saudi Arabia’s MSR Form
  • Review the Marine Research Regulations in the booklet Marine Research Regulations in the Marine Territories of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.


  • The application must be submitted at least four months prior to the research project’s proposed start date.
  • The application must include an “Application to carry out research work in Seychelles” attachment along with a cruise plan/project description. The application can be found here:
  • The application must also include an “Application for entry into Seychelles by air and sea” attachment. The application can be found here:
  • Depending on the research project, the Department of Environment could request applicants to submit a material transfer agreement or a CITES permit.

Solomon Islands

  • The Solomon Islands requires an in-person (in the Solomon Islands) MSR project briefing around the time of application submission.
  • Please contact the Solomon Islands Meteorological Services or the Climate Change Division of the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change Disaster Management & Meteorology on the appropriate collaboration or support towards such data collections, and include this correspondence as an attachment to your application.
  • Contacts:
  • Please reference the Criteria For Research Permits [20 KB] and Research Permission Procedures [334 KB] documents for guidance on completing the Solomon Islands Research Application.
  • Requests for Research Vessels will need to do the following:
    • Complete the Attached Research Application Form [45 KB]
    • Pay non-refundable application fee of SBD$200 (Fee to be paid at Ministry of Finance. This is lodged after gaining a revenue advice from Ministry of Environment)
    • Application fee receipt and completed application form is lodged with Ministry of Environment
    • If application is approved, for Bioresearch activities a fee of SBD$1,000 needs to be paid at the Finance Ministry
    • If research is for bio-prospecting activities then this attracts a fee of SBD$2,500
    • If research includes bioresearch and bioprospecting activities then this attracts a combined fee of SBD$3,500
    • Additionally, for research in Solomon waters, a letter granting permission for research is also required from the Ministry of Fisheries (information provided with Third Person Note from TPN)
    • If research also includes provincial areas, then additionally permission needs to be sought from the relevant Provincial authority
  • Please also include:
    • CV of research applicant and of additional researchers.
    • Endorsement letter from the host institution (Ministry of Environment Climate Change and Disaster Management, Solomon Islands – Director responsible: Mr David Hiriasia, email:
    • Updated list of personals on board the ship
    • Proposal of scientific research
    • Vessel’s certificate of registry
    • Certificate showing compliance with applicable international conventions
    • Current insurance policies applying to the vessel
    • Current international oil pollution prevention certificate
    • Copy of vessel’s oil spill response plan
    • All operational aspects of the voyage and the research activities
    • Equipment’s to be utilized in the research activity

Sri Lanka

  • National Aquatic Resources Research & Development Agency may request an MOU be negotiated and signed.



  • Applications MUST be submitted at least six months in advance. To allow for processing, all required materials must be submitted via RATS at least two weeks prior.
  • Taiwan’s MSR Form [25 KB]
  • List of the science party and vessel crew
  • Attach scanned images of the sea bed topography and sediment reflection patterns of the areas for undertaking underwater operations in Taiwan waters.
    • Note: Taiwan passed a new law regarding Underwater Cultural Heritage Preservation, which mandates anyone undertaking underwater operations in Taiwan waters prove that they will not cause any destruction, damage, loss, or change to the underwater cultural and natural assets. Please specify in your research applications that the team will: 1) use non-destructive underwater detection equipment such as Echo Sounder to do the scanning, and 2) drilled holes will be within a radius of 500 meters (including anchor points). The law stipulates that anyone who discovers possible underwater cultural heritage assets shall terminate any activity that has an influence on such heritage and maintain integrity of the site.
  • NOTE: Research within 24 nautical miles of Taiwan is generally not permitted.


  • In order to conduct MSR in waters subject to Tongan jurisdiction, applicants must be able to offer accommodations for a Tongan participant, and participant expenses including transport, accommodation and travelling allowances are to be borne by the applicant/institution that is applying for consent.
  • Please complete the Tonga MSR Application [39 KB] and attach in RATS.

United Kingdom

  • Provide a spreadsheet of the geographical areas in which the project is to be conducted (with reference in latitude and longitude in decimal degrees, including coordinates of cruise track/way points/sampling stations).
  • If applicable, specify if the research will take place within territorial waters of England, Scotland, or Wales (or a combination, thereof).
  • MSR Applications to the United Kingdom and their overseas territories are due 6.5 months before the start date of the cruise.
  • Please complete the form found on the UK’s MSR Guidance page and review the additional guidance for research in the UK and all related territories.


  • UN Standard Application Form in Spanish.
  • Photocopies of passports of the Captain and P.I.
  • Direct and indirect environmental impact assessment of the project.
  • CV of Venezuelan counterpart. Contact Mr. Perez Nieto, President of the Oceanology Commission at (58416) 6056589, to request support to determine which would be the ideal Venezuelan institutions interested in participating in the project.
  • Copy of vessel registration.


  • Indicate possible technology transfer to Vietnam.

U.S. Department of State

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