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Aircraft equipment registry passes half million milestone



Interest continues to grow as international law facilitates asset-based financing for aircraft equipment

Flying planeThe International Registry of Mobile Assets (International Registry) has achieved a major milestone with the announcement that more than half a million registrations have now been filed. The International Registry provides for the registration and protection of financial interests in aircraft objects, such as airframes, engines and helicopters and was created with the view to reducing financing costs. The Aviation Working Group estimates it will save the global air transport industry USD 161 Billion       USD between 2009 and 2030.

The establishment of the International Registry is provided for under an international treaty regime - the Cape Town Convention and Protocol of 2001. This was adopted under the joint auspices of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (Unidroit). The International Registry is supervised by ICAO and operated by Aviareto, a joint venture between SITA and the Irish Government. It is used to establish legal priority in the case of disputes over interests in aircraft objects. Currently, fifty-five States across the world have ratified both the Convention and the Aircraft Protocol.

The International Registry is a fully online business which services this global industry from Dublin. It started operations in 2006 and since then, there have been over 500,000 registrations covering 110,000 aircraft objects with an estimated value of over half a trillion USD. Of those, 27% of registrations are on airframes, 68% on engines and 5% on helicopters. There is now an average of 7,000 registrations each month.

ICAO Secretary General Raymond Benjamin highlighted that the United Nations aviation body, “has been actively promoting the ratification of the Cape Town Convention and Protocol worldwide. We recognize this latest development as a very important milestone for the International Registry, which is a central feature of the Cape Town instruments.  Reaching half a million registrations clearly demonstrates that the International Registry is meeting the needs for which it was created.”

Unidroit, the depositary for the treaties, expects other industries to follow the lead set by aviation. José Angelo Estrella-Faria, Secretary-General of UNIDROIT, underlined that, The International Registry of Mobile Assets has been a huge success, so much so that similar registries are currently under development for the rail and satellite industries. Unidroit is also examining the development of an agricultural, mining and construction equipment registry.”

Rob Cowan, Managing Director of Aviareto, said: “Aviareto established the online business of the International Registry of Mobile Assets by capitalizing on SITA’s air transport IT expertise and Ireland’s global leadership as centre for aviation finance and leasing. It is very satisfying that it is helping the whole industry by cutting financing costs so effectively. It is also very gratifying that our unique experience will help in the development of the international rail registry in the coming months.”