Page images
PDF
EPUB

No waterway, other than those enumerated in Article 2, shall be placed under the authority of the International Commission without the unanimous consent of the said commission.

ARTICLE 10 On the portion of the Danube and river system placed under its authority, and within the limits of the powers derived from this convention, the International Commission is responsible that no obstacle of any description due to the action of one or more states is placed on the unrestricted navigation of the river; that in respect of access to and the use of ports and their equipment, the subjects, goods and flags of all powers are treated on a footing of complete equality and, generally, that the international character which has been assigned by the treaties to the river system of the Danube suffers no prejudice.

ARTICLE 11 On the basis of proposals and plans submitted by the riparian states, the International Commission draws up the general programme of important works of improvement which should be carried out in the interests of the navigability of the international river system and of which the execution may be spread over a period of several years.

The annual programme of current works of maintenance and improvement of the waterway is drawn up by each riparian state in respect of its own territory and communicated to the commission, which decides whether this programme is in conformity with the requirements of navigation; if necessary, the commission may modify the programme.

The commission, in all its decisions, shall take account of the technical, economic and financial interests of the riparian states.

ARTICLE 12

The works included in these two programmes shall be undertaken by the riparian states, each within the limits of its own frontiers. The commission will satisfy itself that the works are carried out and that they are in conformity with the relevant programme.

In case a riparian state is unable itself to undertake the works which relate to its own territory, it is obliged to allow the International Commission to carry them out under conditions determined by the commission. The commission may not, however, entrust the execution of works to another state unless the section in question of the waterway is a frontier, in which case the commission shall decide, having regard to the special provisions of the treaties, the manner in which the works shall be carried out.

The riparian states concerned are obliged to afford the commission or the executory state, as the case may be, all necessary facilities for carrying out the said works.

ARTICLE 13

The riparian states will have the right to carry out within the limits of their own frontiers, and without the previous consent of the commission, any works which may be necessitated by unforeseen and urgent circumstances. They must, however, without delay apprise the commission of the reasons which have necessitated the works, of which a summary description must be furnished.

ARTICLE 14 The riparian states shall supply the International Commission with a summary description of all works to be carried out on the portion of the waterway situated within their own frontiers which they consider necessary for their economic development, especially works designed to prevent inundation and those undertaken for purposes connected with irrigation and the utilization of hydraulic power.

The commission may not forbid the construction of such works except in so far as they may be detrimental to navigation.

If, within a period of two months from the date of the communication, the commission has made no observation, the execution of the works in question may be proceeded with without further formality. Should the contrary be the case, the commission shall take a definite decision in as short a time as possible and, at latest, within four months after the expiration of the first period,

ARTICLE 15 The costs of current works of maintenance are borne by the riparian states concerned.

Nevertheless, in the event of a state being able to prove that the expenditure involved for the maintenance of the navigable channel substantially exceeds what would be required in the interests of its own traffic, it may request the commission to distribute the expenditure equitably between it and the riparian states directly interested in the execution of the works in question. The commission, in that event, will determine the amount to be contributed by each state and will ensure the settlement of the accounts.

In the event of the commission itself undertaking works of maintenance within the frontiers of a state, it will receive from that state its contributory share of the expenditure.

ARTICLE 16 With regard to works of improvement properly so called and to works in respect of the maintenance of works of improvement of special importance, the state which carries them out may be authorized by the commission to cover their cost by the imposition of navigation dues.

If the commission itself undertakes works of this description, it may cover its expenditure by the imposition of dues.

ARTICLE 17

On those portions of the Danube which form the frontiers between two or more states, the execution of the necessary works and the apportionment of the expenditure involved shall be determined by agreement between the states concerned. Failing an agreement, the commission, with due regard for the provisions of the treaties, shall itself determine the conditions under which the works shall be carried out and, eventually, the apportionment of the expenditure incurred in their execution.

ARTICLE 18 Dues, when levied on navigation, shall be moderate in amount. They shall be assessed on the ship's tonnage and may in no case be based on the goods transported. This system of assessment may be revised by a unanimous decision of the commission at the expiration of a period of five years.

Revenue derived from navigation dues shall be exclusively applied to the works for which they were imposed. The International Commission shall fix and publish the tariffs and shall control the collection and the application of the dues.

The incidence of navigation dues may in no case involve differential treatment in respect of the flag of the vessels or the nationality of persons and goods or in respect of ports of departure or destination or control of the vessels; the dues may in no case provide revenue for either the collecting state or for the commission, nor, unless there exists a suspicion of fraud or transgression, may their collection render necessary a detailed examination

of the cargo.

In cases where the International Commission itself undertakes the execution of works, it will collect the dues necessary to cover its expenditure through the riparian state concerned.

ARTICLE 19

Customs duties, tolls and other taxes imposed by riparian states on goods loaded or discharged in ports or on the banks of the Danube shall be levied without distinction of flag and in such a manner as to cause no hindrance to navigation.

Customs duties may not be higher than those levied at the other customs frontiers of the same state on goods of the same description, origin and destination.

ARTICLE 20 Ports and other places on the international waterway where public loading and discharging is carried out, together with their machinery and equipment, shall be accessible to navigation and utilizable without distinction in respect of flag, country of origin or of destination, nor shall preferential treatment be accorded by the local authorities to any vessel at the expense of any other vessel save in exceptional cases where it is manifest that the exigencies of the moment and the interests of the country demand a modification of the principle. In these cases, the preferential treatment must be accorded so as not to constitute a real hindrance to the unrestricted exercise of navigation nor impair the principle of the equality of flags.

The same authorities shall be responsible that all traffic operations, such as loading, discharging, lightering, warehousing, transhipping, &c., are carried out as easily and rapidly as possible and in such a manner as not in any way to hinder navigation.

Taxes and dues, which shall be reasonable, equally applied to all flags and corresponding in amount to the expenses of construction, maintenance and working of the ports and their equipment, may be levied for the use of ports and places where public loading and discharging is carried out. The scale of taxes and dues shall be published and brought to the notice of those concerned. They shall only be levied when effective use is made of the equipment and machinery in respect of which they have been imposed.

The riparian states shall not hinder navigation companies from establishing on their territories the agencies necessary for the exercise of their business, subject to the observance of the laws and regulations of the country.

ARTICLE 21

In the event of riparian states deciding to create free ports or free zones in ports where transhipment is necessarily or generally carried out, the regulations relating to the use of these ports or zones shall be communicated to the International Commission.

ARTICLE 22 On the international waterway of the Danube, the transport of goods and passengers between the ports of separate riparian states as well as between the ports of the same state is unrestricted and open to all flags on a footing of perfect equality.

Nevertheless, a regular local service for passengers or for national or nationalized goods between the ports of one and the same state may only be carried out by a vessel under a foreign flag in accordance with the national laws and in agreement with the authorities of the riparian state concerned.

ARTICLE 23 The passage in transit of vessels, rafts, passengers and goods, whether effected directly or after transhipment or after warehousing, is free on the internationalized waterway of the Danube.

Traffic in transit shall not be subject to customs duties or other special dues based solely on the fact of transit.

When both banks of a waterway belong to the same state, goods in transit may be placed under seal, under lock or under the guard of customs officers. The state through whose territory the traffic in transit passes shall have the right to require the captain or owner of a vessel to make a written declaration, on oath if necessary, stating whether or not he is carrying goods of which the carriage is subject to regulations or of which the importation is prohibited by the state through whose territory the traffic is in transit. A list of these goods will be communicated as soon as possible to the International Commission.

The authorities of the state through whose territory the traffic is in transit cannot require the production of a ship's manifest unless the captain has been convicted of attempted smuggling or the customs seals or locks have been forced. If, in this event, a discrepancy is discovered between the cargo and the manifest, the captain or owner may not invoke the principle of free transit of goods in order to shelter himself or the goods which he proposed to transport fraudulently from any legal action which, in accordance with the laws of the country, may be directed against him by the customs authorities.

When the waterway forms the frontier between two states, vessels, rafts, passengers and goods in transit shall be exempted from all customs formalities.

ARTICLE 24 The International Commission shall draw up, on the basis of territory by a legislative or administrative act and shall be police regulations which, as far as possible, shall be uniform for the waterway placed under its authority.

Each state shall bring these regulations into force in its own territory by a legislative or administrative act and shall be responsible for their application under the conditions of control recognized by Articles 27 to 30 appertaining to the commission.

On frontier sections, the application of the regulations shall be assured under the same conditions by agreement between the riparian states or, in default of an agreement, by each riparian state within its own territorial boundaries.

ARTICLE 25 The general policing of the international waterway shall be exercised by the riparian states, who will communicate the relevant regulations to the International Commission to enable the latter to satisfy itself that their provisions do not infringe the principle of freedom of navigation.

ARTICLE 26 All vessels specially employed by riparian states on river police work shall carry, in addition to the national flag, a distinctive and uniform flag. The names, descriptions and numbers of the vessels thus employed shall be communicated to the International Commission.

« PreviousContinue »