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Rethinking Ethiopian Secured Transactions Law through comparative perspective: lessons from the Uniform Commercial Code of the US

Asress Adimi Gikay


Various countries have reformed their secured transaction laws recognizing the significance of modern secured transactions law in enhancing access to credit and economic development. Ethiopia has not undertaken comprehensive secured transactions law reform, despite the demonstrable mismatch between the legal regime governing security interests and the country’s current political, economic and commercial realities.  In-depth analysis of the Ethiopian secured transactions law is made in this article in the light of Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) Art 9, English, and French secured transactions laws and the EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) Model law and the experience of civil law jurisdiction of Louisiana. I argue that secured transaction law reform in Ethiopia can be implemented based on UCC Art. 9 with some adjustment in light of Louisiana’s experience. The article uses the unitary concept of security interest and floating lien to exemplify the supremacy of the approaches and policies of UCC Art. 9 and its suitability as a model for potential secured transactions law reform in Ethiopia.

Keywords: Credit market, UCC, unitary concept/theory, functional approach, floating lien, floating charge, security interest, self-help repossession, efficiency