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Cargo Liability Limits Standardized

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IATA has 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eliminates the uncertainty that existed where there was no applicable convention, or where existing conventions were out-of-date or required conversions from non-existing currencies, such as French gold francs.

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

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