chapter  6
11 Pages

The Limits of the Powers of International Organisations

ByA. I. L. Campbell

If an international organisation has limited powers, interpretation of its powers cannot extend them without limit. This chapter discusses the extent to which it can be said that powers may not be adopted by interpretation of an organisation's constitution, with particular emphasis on the implication of powers, apart from the limits provided by ordinary principles of interpretation, e.g. the limits of the purposes of the organisation. It then examines the possible limitations on the implication and exercise of powers by the existence of express powers; the distribution of functions within the organisation; and verbal limitations in the principle of implied powers. In the Expenses case, Judge Moreno Quintana intimated that, as regards implied powers: 'Nothing stands in the way of an appropriate distribution of responsibilities, obligations and powers. Each organ has its due function'. The concern shown by Judge Moreno Quintana was echoed also in the dissenting Opinion of President Winiarski in the same case.