On 1 February 2019 the UNIDROIT Secretariat participated in a consultation workshop considering France’s possible ratification of the Cape Town Convention. Hosted by the Université Paris II (Panthéon-Assas), the workshop brought together international experts, government representatives, private sector lawyers and academia to discuss the benefits and challenges associated with implementing the Cape Town Convention and its Protocols. Presentations were delivered by various experts on the Cape Town Convention, the Aircraft Protocol, the Luxembourg Rail Protocol and the future MAC Protocol. Local experts played a core role in the workshop, which included presentations by Professor Pierre Crocq (Centre Paris II Assas) regarding issues associated with how the Cape Town Convention would operate in relation to French secured transaction laws and Professor Jean-François Riffard (Université Clermont-Ferrand) regarding which declarations under the Convention and Protocol might be most appropriate for France.
On 25 January 2019, Ms Marina Schneider, Senior Legal Officer and Treaty Depositary, UNIDROIT, delivered a presentation on the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention on Stolen or Illegally Exported Cultural Objects at a conference entitled “The international circulation of Artworks” organized by the International Relationship Committee (CRINT) of the Milano Bar Association at the occasion of the Opening of the 2019 Judicial Year of the Milano Court of Appeal.
A first session was dedicated to an overview of the Italian system followed by presentations on the 1970 UNESCO Convention and the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention as well as on the European legal framework, the circulation between Switzerland and Italy and on how sales in auction houses work. It was followed by a roundtable with the participation of representatives of foreign Bar Associations of Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
The conference was opened by Avv. Remo Danovi, President of the Milano Bar Association, Prof. Elio Franzini, Rector Magnificus State University Milano, On. Avv. Paola Frassinetti, Vice President of the Culture, Science and Education Commission, Italian Chamber of Deputies, Avv. Mario Dusi and Pietro Traini, CRINT Chairmen.
On 22 January the UNIDROIT Secretariat attended a special event in Dublin, Ireland celebrating the millionth registration in the International Registry of Mobile Assets, as established under the Aircraft Protocol to the Cape Town Convention. The event was organised by Aviareto, the joint venture between SITA and the Irish Government which has operated the International Registry since 2006. To mark the occasion, speeches were made by Rob Cowan (Managing Director of Aviareto), Sir Roy Goode (author of the Aircraft Protocol Official Commentary) and Michael D’Arcy TD (Minister of State at the Irish Department of Finance). Over half a trillion dollars’ worth of assets have been securely registered in the International Registry. Since its creation in 2001, the Aircraft Protocol has gained 75 Contracting States and has been approved by the European Union.
On 24 January 2019, UNIDROIT Secretary-General Professor Ignacio Tirado delivered the inaugural speech of the 15th edition of the International Business Law Masters of the Business and Economics Department of La Sapienza University.
The session was opened by the Director of the Law and Economics Department Professor Daniele Vattermoli, the Director of the Masters Programme, Professor Daniele U. Santosuosso, and its Scientific Coordinator Professor Alessandro Nigro.
Professor Tirado’s lecture was entitled “Rethinking Transnational Law”, in which he provided his vision on the challenges faced by International Commercial Law and the Role of International Organisations such as UNIDROIT.
On 16 January 2019, Professor Ignacio Tirado, UNIDROIT Secretary-General, and Professor Philippos Pouyioutas, Rector of the University of Nicosia (Cyprus), signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote cooperation between UNIDROIT and the University of Nicosia School of Law. Cooperation will cover the consideration of UNIDROIT instruments and projects within the University’s relevant academic programs, the promotion of the UNIDROIT Research and Internship Programme and the creation of a fellowship scheme. Regarding cooperation between UNIDROIT and academic institutions, see the relevant UNIDROIT webpage.
On 20 December 2018 Ghana’s instruments of ratification of the Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment and of the Protocol to the Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment on Matters specific to Aircraft Equipment were deposited with UNIDROIT. Ghana made declarations under Articles 39(1)(a)-(b), 53, 54(2) and of 60(1) of the Convention, and under Articles XXX(1), XXX(2) and XXX(3) of the Aircraft Protocol. The Convention and the Aircraft Protocol will enter into force for Ghana on 1 April 2019. Further details about the Convention and the Aircraft Protocol are available at the "Depositary Functions of UNIDROIT / Cape Town Convention" and "Depositary Functions of UNIDROIT / Aircraft Protocol" pages.
On 19 December 2018 Paraguay’s instruments of accession to the Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment and to the Protocol to the Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment on Matters specific to Aircraft Equipment were deposited with UNIDROIT. Paraguay made declarations under Articles 39(1)(a)-(b), 39(4), 53, and of 54(2), and under Articles XIX(1), XXX(1), XXX(2) and XXX(3) of the Aircraft Protocol. The Convention and the Aircraft Protocol will enter into force for Paraguay on 1 April 2019. Further details about the Convention and the Aircraft Protocol are available at the "Depositary Functions of UNIDROIT (Cape Town Convention) " and "Depositary Functions of UNIDROIT (Aircraft Protocol)" pages.
On 6-7 December 2018, UNIDROIT and OTIF held the 8th session of the Rail Preparatory Commission for the establishment of an International Registry under the Luxembourg Rail Protocol in Rome, immediately after the UNIDROIT General Assembly. The session was attended by 32 State delegations. It was opened by the Chairman of the UNIDROIT General Assembly, Ambassador Paul Dühr of the Embassy of Luxembourg in Rome, UNIDROIT Secretary-General Professor Ignacio Tirado, and Chief of Technical Interoperability of OTIF Mr Bas Leermakers. The Commission, Co-Chaired by Mr Peter Bloch and Ms Mervi Kaikkonen (who participated remotely), approved the Statutes and the Rules of Procedure of the Supervisory Authority, as well as future steps leading to the entry into force of the Protocol. A number of participating delegations made statements relating to the benefits connected with the future operation of the Protocols as well as to the status of the ratification process in their legal system. On the second day, panellists briefed interested delegations on the Protocol and its implementation.