31 July 2003


(Reissued as received.)

KINGSTON, 30 July (International Seabed Authority) -- Jozef Franzen (Slovakia), who was elected today as President of the Assembly of the International Seabed Authority at its ninth session (2003), is Plenipotentiary of the Slovak Government in the Interoceanmetal Joint Organization (IOM).

Mr. Franzen was born in Bratislava on 6 February 1946.  He studied geology there at Comenius University (1963-68), where he remained until 1974 as assistant lecturer on mineral raw materials.

Joining the Slovak Geological Office in 1974, he became, in 1990, chief of the Department of Regional Geology and Mineral Raw Materials.  In 1999, he was appointed General Director of the Geology and Natural Resources Division in the Ministry of the Environment, which had assumed the functions of the Geological Office.  In 1986, he earned the title of RNDr. (Rerum naturalis doctor).

Since 1 September 1999, Mr. Franzen has been Plenipotentiary of Slovakia in IOM, an intergovernmental consortium that is one of seven entities under contract with the Authority to explore for polymetallic nodules in the international seabed area.  He has taken part in the thirty-third to fortieth sessions of IOM, serving as Chairman of its Council for the past five sessions.  He has attended all annual sessions of the Authority since 2000.

He is Vice-President of the Slovak Mining Society and Chairman of the Mineralia Slovaca Corporation, publisher of the journal of the Slovak Geological Society and of Slovak geological organizations.

Mr. Franzen is married and has three children.

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