TRANSPORT – Introduction


The rise of the internet has had a significant impact on the production of this publication over the years. The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which had for many years provided the editors with the necessary information about signatures and ratifications for the 'Survey of Conventions', decided to initiate the general online Dutch Treaty Collection 'Verdragenbank'. Understandably, the Ministry decided to allocate its manpower to that project and discontinue the special service to this publication. While the 'Verdragenbank' was still in its infancy and did not provide very detailed information the editors could use, they were however happy to find the Asser Institute in the Hague willing to fill the void. It did so until the end of 2009 after which the information was collected by the editors through research of online sources or direct contact with national ministries and international organizations acting as depository. But in the spring of 2012 the publishers Kluwer Law International decided to discontinue the publication of TRANSPORT as the publishers wanted to shift away from publishing information which might already be in the public domain. Since then it has taken some time to consider whether to continue the publication in some form, and whether to involve another publisher.

Over the past few years it became clear that there continues to be a need for a central collection of transport law instruments. Despite the fact that much information is now available through online sources, practitioners, judges and academics informed me that they continue to have difficulty collecting accurate information. Several reasons were given. Depositories of conventions will of course only provide information about the conventions for which they act as depository. Similarly, treaty collections maintained by national governments only provide details about conventions to which the particular country is a signatory or a party. Many other online collections are limited to one mode of transport. Because of these limitations extra effort is required to carry out comparative studies. It also proves difficult to find information about conventions that have attracted little or no ratifications, although the text of the convention may still be relevant for consideration in the drafting of future conventions or legislation. Finally, some other online collections do not seem to strive for much accuracy, or are limited to fairly recent instruments. Enough reasons to revive the publication of TRANSPORT.

It was decided not to revive the paper edition, and only provide a very basic online database without the further involvement of a publishing company. Fortunately, the Nederlandse Vereniging voor Vervoerrecht (Dutch Transport Law Association) was willing to offer space on its website for this publication, and it is hoped other materials and publications may be added to the website in the future in order to provide a steady source of relevent information for all who are interested in transport law. The information can be accessed by means of a chronological table and a systematical table that are very similar to the tables used in the previous edition. If available, TRANSPORT provides both the English and French text of the relevant instrument, with a warning if a text in one of these languages is not authentic. TRANSPORT no longer provides a separate Survey of Conventions with its own lists of countries that have signed or ratified particular conventions. However, the pdf of each convention in this database contains information in the back (after the English and French text) about the status of the convention, with hyperlinks to the database of the relevant depository or organization under the auspices of which the convention was prepared. This ensures accurate and up-to-date information. Further information may be added in the future about published travaux préparatoires or other essential materials.

At the time of publication of this introduction, only the Road Transport section is completely back online. It will be followed by the section on Inland Navigation. It is expected that all the remaining information (sections Maritime Law, Air Law, Transport by Rail, and Miscellaneous) will be put online before the end of 2016. While doing so, all texts contained in the previous edition are meticulously checked with other relevant online sources, particulary of depositories or originating organizations. Now TRANSPORT is taking this new course I would like to thank the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Buddy Vetter), the Asser Institute (Marco van der Harst), co-editor Jan de Boer, and Kluwer Law International (Ewa Cairns-Szkatula) for their long-lasting cooperation on the previous edition.

Taco van der Valk
AKD Transport & Energy
Rotterdam, July 2016



Since the first publication of TRANSPORT in 1974 approximately 35 texts of conventions and protocols have been added to this work.

Dates of signature, ratification and accession, and details of proviso applicable to some treaties and protocols have been listed in the part 'Survey of Conventions'. These lists provide, in addition, details on whether or not, and if so when, the treaties and protocols have entered into force.

The 'survey of conventions' which was completely reset and thoroughly checked, will be updated twice annually by P. Th. de Lange who is a member of staff with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands.

As from this 1986 issue, the text of conventions, protocols etc. will be given in English and French be it the authentic version or the official translation. Also a division in 6 subjects (Maritime Law, Inland Navigation, Air Law, Road Transport, Transport by Rail and Miscellaneous) has been introduced: all conventions, protocols etc. belonging to one subject are placed – in chronological order – under their respective subjects. Thus a better view of each field of transport law is effected; handling of TRANSPORT will be easier. Both the systematic and chronological table of contents has been given in an English and French translation to facilitate easy and quick reference. Besides, keywords are printed in bold. An instruction for easy reference to TRANSPORT has been added before the tabpage 'Systematical Table'.

All these changes resulted in a complete re-issue of TRANSPORT in a bigger format, each text beginning on a new page. The typeface has increased somewhat.

We would like to point out that this 1986 issue is 'up to date' till the 1st of February 1986, which especially refers to the Survey of Conventions.

The compilers of TRANSPORT would welcome any comment the user of this volume may have in respect of the texts of conventions or the structure of the volume, to be addressed to Kluwer Law and Taxation Publishers, P.O. Box 23, 7400 G A Deventer, Netherlands.

M. H. Claringbould
Nauta Van Haersolte
Rotterdam, February 1986



June the 27th 1974 we commemorated the day on which 250 years ago Adriaen Schadee became a Notary Public at Rotterdam. Our office was founded hereby and one of his direct descendants has been a partner ever since. This led us to call upon associate Mr H. Schadee to compile this reference book.

Under the name 'TRANSPORT' it contains the text of a large number of treaties and a number of standard regulations that are of importance to transport law. The treaties which have been included were chosen from a practical and not from a dogmatic point of view.

The volume aims at saving time and trouble to all who are concerned with the application, the interpretation or the drafting of transport law and regulations. It is hoped that consuming searching for the authentic texts and translations will be avoided.

We regret we were unable to specify in which countries the treaties mentioned are applicable. This would have resulted in considerable trouble and costs and we would even then not have been able to guarantee perfect accuracy.

The inclusion of a number of draft treaties was decided upon the idea that they could stimulate discussion and in particular be useful in connection with the drafting or interpretation of other treaties.

The location of the texts included in the volume is given wherever possible in order to make checking easier. We can only hope that during compilation of this volume errors and inaccuracies have been avoided.

We are greatly indebted to Mrs. D. R. Sturms-de Boer, who was responsible for collecting and compiling the texts. Without her remarkable energy this publication would not have been possible.

Rotterdam, June 27th 1974
Nauta, Lambert, Blussé


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