The Reporter (Addis Ababa)

Ethiopia: International Carriage Convention Presented for House Ratification

The Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air was presented to the House of Peoples' Representatives (HPR) for ratification in a bid to help Ethiopian Airlines meet the precondition of other signatory nations that the carrier services.

The Convention was established in Montreal on May 29, 1999, coming into force in 2003 as it replaced the "Warsaw Convention".

The attached document presented to the House along with the convention explains, "The country has frequently been requested to ratify the convention, and Ethiopian Airlines was challenged to endorse the agreement and translate it into practical implementation as a precondition for its journey to countries who have already agreed to the terms of the convention.

"For Ethiopia, the ratification of the agreement will elevate our country's aviation development to a better level," the document read. "Furthermore, it enables the safety of passengers, passengers' belongings and cargo."

According to the document, the convention was presented to the House upon request by Ethiopian Airlines, who is the responsible body to which the law applies.

The agreement states that compensation claims should be made within two years, and the convention also forces countries to either accept or reject the whole document with no reservation.

According to the proposed draft law presented for the House's ratification, the Ministry of Transport is empowered to undertake all acts necessary for the implementation of the convention, in collaboration with "the concerned" government organs.

The convention applies to the international carriage of persons, baggage or cargo performed by aircraft for reward. Similarly, it applies equality to gratuitous carriage performed by an air transport undertaking.

The convention recognizes the importance of ensuring the protection of the consumers' interests, and the need for equitable compensation based on the principles of restitution.

It was also said that the convention reaffirms the desirability of an orderly development of international air transport operations, and the smooth flow of passengers, baggage and cargo in accordance with the principles and objectives of the convention on International Civil Aviation.

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