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Press Release No.:  

Date: 14 July 2010

News Brief: Cargo Liability Limits Standardized - Major Step Forward to Simplify Air Cargo

Geneva – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced the standardization of cargo liability limits. With regulatory approval and with effect from 1 July 2010, the Air Waybill (AWB) Conditions of Contract (IATA Resolution 600b) have been changed to harmonize the application of the Montreal Convention liability limit for all air cargo across all routes. 

This simplified approach improves efficiency for shippers and forwarders. It is also consistent with industry efforts to improve competitiveness by simplifying global processes with projects including IATA e-freight.

The amendment to Resolution 600b standardizes the application of the 19 Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) per kilogram Montreal Convention liability limit to all routes worldwide.  The following advantages derive from the change:

  • Increased certainty for claims handling and service determination
  • Increased accuracy for claims procedures by standardizing the various regimes
  • The single global standard eliminates the uncertainty that existed where there was no applicable convention, or where existing conventions were out-of-date or required conversions from non-existing currencies, such as French gold francs.

The acceptance by airlines of the Montreal Convention liability limit standard on all routes is a step forward for the air cargo industry. 


For more information, please contact:

  • Albert Tjoeng
    Assistant Director
    Corporate Communications
    Asia Pacific
    Tel: +65 64992286
    Email: tjoenga@iata.org

Notes for Editors:

  • IATA (International Air Transport Association) represents some 230 airlines comprising 93% of scheduled international air traffic
  • Prior to the new Resolution 600b, the liability limits depended on the applicable regime, such as:
    - 250 French gold francs per kilogram under the Warsaw Convention (unamended)
    - 17 Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) per kilogram under the Warsaw Convention amended by Montreal Protocol No. 4
    - 19 SDRs per kilogram under the Montreal Convention 1999
    - 19 SDRs per kilogram for all carriage to or from the United States
  • The Montreal Convention provides a secure legal foundation for IATA's e-freight initiative and supports the move towards the implementation of the electronic Air Waybill (e-AWB).
  • IATA will continue to engage governments for the rapid adoption of the Montreal Convention.  This will pave the way for the expedited implementation of e-freight globally.
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